If Halloween wasn’t scary enough for East St. John High football fans, Friday night’s game might have been just what they needed.
Wildcats kicker Alex Reyes was the hero who saved the day, kicking a 27-yard field goal as time expired to give East St. John a 15-13 victory and earn himself a spot at the bottom of a wild dogpile.
The kick capped a wild comeback for the Wildcats (7-2, 4-1), who remain one game out of first place in the District 7-5A race. Terrebonne (4-5, 3-3) looked to have a 13-12 victory in hand when East St. John turned the ball over on downs with 2:24 remaining. But the Tigers had struggled all night against East St. John’s defense and were forced to punt with 54 seconds remaining.
Things looked bleak for the Wildcats as they started their final drive at their own 30. But a 35-yard pass from Sean Shelby to Rydell Jackson put East St. John at the Tigers 35 and Shelby quickly spiked the ball to stop the clock with 49 seconds. Then came an incredible series of events. Shelby threw six straight incompletions, but Terrebonne was flagged for pass interference on two of those moving the ball to the 20 with 20 seconds remaining, then the 10 with 8 seconds left. After one more -try at the end zone, Wildcats coach Brandon Brown sent Reyes out for the field goal attempt, even after he had missed two PATs earlier in the game. The night was a frustrating one for East St. John, which finished with 41 yards rushing, 88 yards in penalties and two turnovers. Calvin Gardner scored on a 2-yard run in the second quarter, but finished with 26 yards on 14 carries. Quarterback Shelby passed for 205 yards and one touchdown on 16 completions. Markel August had 7 catches for 103 yards but Dontae Fleming had the lone touchdown catch.
The Wildcats defense forced four turnovers, including interceptions by Shawn Sterling, Kevon Breaux and Rajay Johnson. East St. John also recovered a fumble. Defensive lineman Welland Williams spent a lot of time in the Terrebonne backfield and had three sacks and recovered a fumble that led to East St. John’s first touchdown.