District 9-3A rival Franklin (3-6, 2-3) took an early lead and had momentum, scoring on an interception return just before halftime. But, the highly-regarded Lumberjacks exploded for 29 third-quarter points en route to a convincing, 62-19, win Friday at J.C. Dry Stadium in Franklin.
Early in the second quarter, Franklin running back Brian Robertson scored on a 2-yard run and with the extra point, Patterson trailed for the first time this season 7-6.
Robertson is also the first player to score a touchdown against the Lumberjacks’ first-team defense.
Patterson answered immediately — quarterback Justice Jones hooked up with Trevon Stewart for a 65-yard scoring strike on the Jacks’ first play of the possession. PHS led 12-6 with 9:06 remaining in the half.
Stewart added to the Jacks’ lead with a 27-yard touchdown run after the teams exchanged fumbles.
With under a minute to play in the half, Patterson’s defense forced a three-and-out. But Hornets’ punter Derrick Kelly boomed a 42-yard punt that was downed at the PHS 6-yard line. Patterson came out throwing and Franklin defensive back Davonte Joseph stepped in front of a Jones pass and returned it 45 yards for a touchdown with just four seconds left in the half. Patterson took an 18-13 lead into the half, but momentum was clearly in Franklin’s corner.
“Their kids played hard in the first half and they got a big turnover just before the half to make it a one score game,” Patterson head coach Tommy Minton said. “(Franklin coach) J. (Ina) and those guys had a good game plan and their kids played with a lot of emotion.”
Ina coached at Patterson High School for several years before taking over at his alma mater two years ago.
Patterson (8-0, 5-0) didn’t take any prisoners in the second half.
Stewart opened the scoring with his third TD of the night, a 32-yard scamper with 10:35 remaining. The Jacks added a two point conversion for a 26-13 lead.
Stewart, a University of Houston commitment, continued his big senior season. He was the team’s leading rusher with 11 carries for 128 yards and two scores, while he caught three passes for 100 yards and a touchdown.
Stewart has carried 46 times for 703 yards and 13 TDs and he’s caught 20 passes for 338 yards and six scores.
Lorenzo Phillips grabbed a short kick off out of the air, on the run, to give the ball back to the Jacks’ offense.
Jones took a quarterback keeper 14 yards to pay dirt for a 33-13 Lumberjacks’ lead with 9:02 remaining in the third quarter. Mark Jones got into the act with a 77-yard touchdown run after the defense forced yet another three-and-out.
Patterson capped its third quarter scoring outburst with a J. Jones 41-yard TD toss to M. Jones with 56 seconds left for a 47-13 lead.
J. Jones was 11-of-17 passing for 213 yards and two touchdowns. The interception just before the half was the senior’s first this season. He has completed 96 of 140 passes for 1,514 yards and 23 touchdowns.
“Man, those guys are good,” Ina said. “There’s a reason why they were in the Dome last season and I think they will make a run at it again this year. My game plan was to do some things that they were not prepared for. I wanted them to make adjustments on the move and that worked for the first half. My hats off to them, they did a great job of making those adjustments in the second half.”
Robertson added a 28-yard touchdown run for the Hornets with 8:46 remaining in the game. He was the teams leading rusher with 15 carries for 69 yards and two touchdowns. Robertson has carried 67 times for 414 yards and eight touchdowns this season.
Denzel Johnson found Jaydrick Declouet for a 25-yard touchdown with 5:57 to play and Deontay Jones closed out the scoring with a 16-yard run with just over three minutes to play.
Patterson will celebrate homecoming on Friday against Erath (3-6, 2-3), while Franklin will host Berwick (0-9, 0-5).