ARCADIA — The Arcadia Hornets ground out a 26-16 win over the White Castle Bulldogs in a Clas 1A second-round matchup.
The Hornets took the victory on the back of Corey Russell Jr. who gained 105 yards and a touchdown. The Hornets also got a three-touchdown, 110- total offensive yard performance from Antonio “AJ” Boston, Jr.
“I just want to thank my team, they the one who put me in the position to score all these touchdowns,” Boston said. “Without them, I wouldn’t have been able to do it.
“We executed very well and the line blocked very well. We just come back stronger.”
Said Arcadia coach Dimitri Carr said, “I match our district up and their district up. White Castle plays in a physical district and we play in a physical district. It was going to be a war.”
Arcadia (10-2) took a slim 12-8 lead into halftime.
White Castle began with an early ground attack but was uneffective against the Arcadia defense. Russell started the Hornets offense off with a 34- yard run and ground down to the 5-yard line in the next nine plays.
Johnson then finished the drive with a 5-yard run to take the early lead. White Castle continued to struggle and was pinned back in its territory.
The Bulldogs then gave the Hornets the ball back on the 9-yard line on a bad snap.
On the first play of the second quarter, Boston ran in from 1 yard to give Arcadia the 12-0 lead and seemed to be in control. White Castle changed its offense and went to the air.
A 21-yard pass by Jermaine Richard put the Bulldogs in Arcadia territory. Jermaine Richard then found Demarius Stewart for a 31-yard touchdown pass to close the gap to 12-8.
The White Castle (4-8) defense seemed to keep the duo contained early in the third quarter.
The Hornets’ swarming defense, meanwhile, kept the Buldogs from putting points on the board. Jacquaelyn Jackson intercepted a pass at midfield and then later in the fourth quarter had a fumble recovery.
Arcadia’s offense started firing again as Jatavious Graham connected with Boston for a 22-yard touchdown pass. Boston then struck again on the first play of the fourth quarter with a 37-yard run for his third touchdown. White Castle did not concede as Richard rocketed a 25-yard touchdown pass to Marlon Lewis. An onside attempt by the Bulldogs failed as Arcadia ended the game 26-16.
Arcadia is now set up for a quarterfinal matchup at Kentwood, the defending state champions.
“I tell my team that when the turkey is being served, the good teams are playing,” Carr said.