Johnathan Abram feels like he can do it all.
The East Marion quarterback proved it Thursday in the Eagles’ 27-14 victory over county rival Columbia.
Abram rushed for 101 yards and two touchdowns, passed for 96 yards and a touchdown, punted twice and even intercepted a pass from the opposing quarterback.
All in a day’s work for the junior from East Marion.
“I told (head coach Kevin Jackson) was just, ‘Put the ball in my hands,'” Abram said. “I want the ball at all times.”
With production like that, who is Jackson to argue?
“That’s the type of athlete he is,” said Jackson, who is in his first season at East Marion (2-0). “Whatever you ask him to do, he’s more than willing to do it. He’s a great leader for us, and fortunately, he had a great game for us tonight.”
On the Eagles’ second series of the game, Abram and junior running back Jaylin Akins put together a five-play, 76-yard drive that culminated in Abrams’ 2-yard dive into the end zone. The quarterback’s score was set up by a 62-yard run from Akins, who finished with 98 yards on 16 carries.
However, the Wildcats (0-2) answered three minutes later when Ti’Quan Forbes hooked up with Heath Greenlee from 8 yards out to tie the game.
“I knew (Columbia) came off a tough loss (last week),” Jackson said. “So I knew they were going to be fired up and hyped up, especially with this being a rivalry game. And they were early on.”
But late in the first half, East Marion dropped a double-whammy on Columbia that put the nail in the coffin.
Abram found Akin with a 13-yard touchdown pass with 35 seconds left in the second quarter to put the Eagles up 13-7.
Two plays later, Latoddric Fortenberry came away with a 66-yard pick-6 as time expired in the half. Akins ran in the 2-point conversion to give East Marion a 21-7 lead at halftime.
“East Marion’s a pretty good football team,” Columbia head coach Walter Denton said. “They’re big, physical, they’ve got good backs. They’ve got a chance to go (far).”
Abram added his second scoring run of the game with 2:50 left in the third quarter from a yard out.
With 7:45 left in the game, Forbes connected with Savon Lewis on a 12-yard touchdown pass, but that was all the Wildcats could muster.
“Our kids played hard,” Jackson said. “And that’s what happens when you work hard. Good things happen.”