Spartans remain undefeated with blowout of Cecilia
Playing on the road against the third-ranked team in Class 5A, Cecilia fought hard on Friday night, but in the end, they were no match for East Ascension's big-play offense and opportunistic defense.
The Spartan secondary came up with three interceptions, and they turned the turnovers into 20 points. It all contributed to a 58-24 blowout victory that improved them to 4-0.
"We had two guys go out with severe injuries. The next men up were young kids who had minimal reps," East Ascension head coach Darnell Lee said. "That kind of makes you nervous, but that's why you practice. They came in and didn't do a bad job for us, but Cecilia fought. They fought for four quarters. They're a very scrappy team."
On the first play of the game, Spartan quarterback Jason Wakefield hit Steven McBride for 47 yards.
After a personal foul was tacked on, East Ascension had the ball at the Cecilia 9, but the Bulldogs forced them to settle for a 31-yard field goal.
After kicker Alberto Ontiveros made it 3-0, Jacolby Reed came up with an interception on Cecilia's first offensive play.
Eight plays later, Ethan Bagwell scored on a two-yard run to give East Ascension an early 10-0 advantage.
After the Bulldogs made a field goal, the Spartan offense went back on the move to start the second quarter.
It only took them six plays to march 49 yards. Bagwell scored again--this time on a run from 12 yards out to extend the lead to 17-3.
However, midway through the quarter, Cecilia took over at the Spartan 10-yard line following an errant snap on an East Ascension punt. One play later, they scored to cut the deficit to 17-10.
From there, it was all Spartans.
East Ascension responded with a five-play, 57-yard drive. An 18-yard touchdown run by Nick Massey put them up 24-10.
On Cecilia's next offensive play, Massey came up with an interception and returned it to the Bulldog 10. Two plays later, Wakefield scored on a two-yard quarterback sneak to give the Spartans a commanding 30-10 halftime advantage.
East Ascension's opening kick of the second half was a short one that they were able to recover. Four plays later, Wakefield hit McBride for a nine-yard score.
On Cecilia's first possession of the third quarter, Derrick Smith came up with an interception off of a deflection. They eventually cashed in the turnover with a 13-yard touchdown hookup between Wakefield and Shaivonn Robinson to make it 44-10 heading to the fourth.
In the final quarter, East Ascension added a three-yard touchdown run by Kael Babin and a 52-yard scoring scamper by Kendall Washington.
Cecilia had two non-offensive touchdowns late. One was a kickoff return for a score; the other was a scoop-and-score following a Spartan fumble.
The East Ascension defense held Cecilia to just 182 total yards, and only 34 of those came on the ground.
"They've been playing well all year. They always play hard, and I'm proud of them for the way they played," Lee said. "Any time you put some younger guys in, that's their opportunity to get reps. We just have to play four quarters of football--regardless of who is on the field for the Spartans."
Wakefield threw for 142 yards and two touchdowns, and he ran for another score. His favorite target was McBride as he came up with three catches for 78 yards and a touchdown.
Bagwell led the Spartans on the ground with 77 yards and two scores on just 11 carries.
East Ascension is 4-0 and ranked third, but Coach Lee said that they still have a long way to go.
"We've got a lot of work to do," Lee said. "Every week, there's more and more to improve on. I don't see that as a sign of regression. I just think teams are getting a little more film on us; we have to do a little bit better of a job of adjusting. For the most part, I don't think we're doing bad; I'd just like to see us do better."
This week, the Spartans will hit the road to play 2-2 St. Charles.