A 75-yard touchdown run by quarterback Zack Vicknair to open the third quarter broke a scoreless tie at halftime and the St. Charles defense came up with another defensive gem as the Comets held on to take a 17-9 win at East Ascension.
East Ascension started three possessions inside St. Charles territory, but the Comet defense kept the Spartans out of the end zone on each occasion, leading to a scoreless first half. The SCC defense limited EA to 1 of 9 in third-down conversion attempts and record five-and-a-half sacks.
After Vicknair’s touchdown, the Comets (3-0) were forced to punt on their next possession that was run back for an apparent score by the Spartans. A penalty by EA gave SCC new life, leading to a 32-yard field goal by Carter Chauvin to make it 10-0 at the 7:07 mark of the fourth quarter.
Kullen Wheat, East Ascension’s backup quarterback, entered the game and led the Spartans to a touchdown when he connected with Navell Chopin on a 14-yard touchdown pass to make the score 10-7 with 4:14 left in the game. It was the first points allowed by the Comet defense in 12 quarters to open the season.
The Comets mishandled the ensuing kickoff, resulting with SCC taking possession at its own 7-yard line. After an initial first down, St. Charles faced fourth down deep in its own territory. Instead of punting, the Comets took a safety, making it 10-9 with 2:10 left in the game.
After the free kick, the Spartans took possession at their own 42-yard line.
EA (2-1) drove down to the St. Charles 13 when Regdrick Hackett intercepted a Wheat pass and raced 99 yards for a touchdown and a 17-9 Comets lead with 2:10 left in the game.
On the ensuing possession, a 52-yard pass by Wheat advanced the ball to the SCC 23. Facing pressure, Wheat tossed to a Spartans running back, who was tackled in bounds and the clock ran out.
“We tried to give it away a couple of times, but our kids were resilient and kept fighting. They were exhausted at the end. The defense was on the field far too much. The offense didn’t help them much with three turnovers,” St. Charles coach Frank Monica said.
St. Charles won the game despite being limited to 138 yards of total offense, including 106 rushing and 32 passing. Vicknair rushed for 140 yards but the Comets lost 37 yards off of bad snaps. The SCC quarterback was 3 of 9 passing for 32 yards.
East Ascension finished with 179 yards passing and 101 rushing.
Wheat was 8 of 10 passing for 122 yards coming off the bench.
Walter Samuel topped the Spartans in rushing with 73 yards on 13 carries.
The Spartans marched down to the St. Charles 42-yard line on the opening possession of the game, but the drive ended on an interception by Comets linebacker Mandel Eugene.
East Ascension forced a quick St. Charles punt, which the Spartans blocked, giving EA the ball the SCC 24-yard line.
EA failed to take advantage when the Spartans missed a 19-yard field goal.