PCA hammers River Oaks in football season opener

Published 12:13 am Saturday, August 12, 2023

MONROE, La. — Week Zero was Win No. 1 for Porter’s Chapel Academy.

Jase Jung and Ty Mack each ran for more than 100 yards, and the Eagles scored two touchdowns and a safety on defense as they rolled past River Oaks 66-38 in their season opener on Friday.

PCA won its opener for the third season in a row, after losing five of the previous six. It also beat River Oaks for only the second time in seven all-time meetings. Friday’s game was one of a dozen Week Zero games in the MAIS, played a week before the rest of the association’s teams begin their seasons.

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“We settled in. We started blocking and trusting the scheme. Running backs were hitting holes and when they do that good things were happening,” PCA coach Blake Purvis said. “We stopped worrying about what they were doing and started controlling what we could control. Good things happen when you do that.”

The Eagles’ first points of the season came courtesy of their defense. Jung recovered a fumble for a touchdown in the first quarter, and then Henry Slayton made a tackle in the end zone for a safety. It was the start of a 52-point first half that put the game out of reach early.

PCA led 52-20 at halftime and the game was played with a running clock for most of the second half.

“When the offense was slow getting going, the defense was picking us up,” Purvis said. “We had a little first-game jitters on offense, but settled in. I think four straight possessions we were one-play touchdowns.”

Jung finished with 138 rushing yards and three touchdowns on nine carries, to go along with his defensive touchdown.

Mack also had 138 rushing yards and two touchdowns on only four attempts. He scored on runs of 35 and 55 yards the first two times he touched the ball. Mack also had six tackles, one sack, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery on defense.

Quarterback John Wyatt Massey was 4-of-6 passing for 62 yards and one touchdown, a 21-yard toss to Thomas Azlin.

PCA’s other defensive touchdown came courtesy of Gavin Pugh, who returned an interception 100 yards in the third quarter.

Purvis said he was pleased with the contributions across the board, and also with how his team physically held up on a brutally hot evening in North Louisiana. The Eagles only have 13 varsity players in grades 10-12, but Purvis said none of them had cramping issues until very late in the game.

“We stayed on the field and stayed healthy. The first half was an hour and 45 minutes long and it was 103 degrees when we took the field. I had three cramps late, late in the fourth quarter. Other than that we were healthy,” Purvis said. “Our guys that rotated gave us some good snaps so we could get blows. This early in the season, to see us hold up that well with our depth that we have, that was probably our biggest validation. Could not be more proud of these guys.”

PCA will play its home opener next Friday, Aug. 18, at 7 p.m. against Delta Academy.