GAUTIER - Resurrection's defense allowed just three first downs - none in the second half - as the Eagles shut down Sebastopol 35-0 in the first round of the Class 1A state football playoffs Friday.
Resurrection (11-0) now has seven shutouts on the year and has allowed only 32 points through 11 games. The Eagles have a streak of two games and nine quarters without allowing a score.
The Bobcats (5-8) came into the game winners of five of their last six games with two shutouts and averaging 38.5 points per game in their late-season surge. Markell Jones and Tyrell Stephens had combined for 1,845 rushing yards and 28 touchdowns in the Bobcats' regular season.
"We knew they would be good," said Resurrection coach Scott Sisson. "We knew they returned most of the players they had last year (a team beat by the Eagles 38-8 in the opening round last year) and that they would be bigger, stronger, and faster this year."
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Still, that did not matter against the Resurrection defense.
Steven Demetropoulos, who had nine stops on the night, led the Eagles' defense turning back the Bobcats, limiting Jones and Stephens to just 39 yards on 16 carries. Only one of the Bobcats' three first downs came on a running play - a 5 yard run by Jeremiah Ickom that came after Jones fumbled a ball forward that was recovered a few inches short of the first down marker.
Of Sebastopol's 11 possessions, nine ended on three-and-outs as Resurrection forced eight punts in the game. The Bobcats passed the 50 yard line only once on a 32 yard pass play from Gerrand Bobbitt to Dayquan Jones that took the ball to the Resurrection 28. That would be as deep as the Bobcats would get, however, as the next four plays netted just two yards.
"The way they communicate with each other is amazing," Sisson said. "They are a great defense."
While Resurrection's defense was strong throughout the night, their offense was slow to develop. The Eagles' defense scored the game's first touchdown after Renzell Johnson picked up a fumble and rumbled 16 yards for a score with 5:56 left in the first quarter.
Resurrection did not put the game away until two fourth-quarter Justice Sharp touchdowns to lead 35-0. Sharp had scoring runs of 14 and eight yards. With just over nine minutes left, Sharp ran 14 yards gave the Eagles a 28-0 lead.
"It's the same old story," Sisson said. "Our defense starts strong early until our offense can get in the game."
Dillan Jolly scored the Eagles' first offensive touchdown on a 3-yard run in the second quarter for a 14-0 halftime lead.
Resurrection opened the third-quarter with a 11-play, 52-yard drive to go up 21-0. Michael Gatchet caught a 25-yard TD reception from Blake Porter on fourth down.
Johnson also hadfive stops and a sack on the night. Terry Lancaster led the Eagles defensive line with five stops.
Patrick Watts paced the Eagles running game with 87 yards on 12 carries. Jolly added 61 yards on nine carries and Sharp finished with 43 yards on five carries.Jones paced a strong Sebastopol defensive effort with 11 stops and two sacks. Ickom added eight tackles for the Bobcats.