28-10 win over Heritage Academy puts ACCS in state championship game
COLUMBUS — Jakarius Caston had 20 carries for 134 yards and two touchdowns, including a go-ahead touchdown late in the third quarter, as the Adams County Christian School Rebels pulled off yet another upset in the MAIS Class AAA State Playoffs.
The latest victim of No. 14 seed ACCS was No. 2 seed and District2-AAA champion Heritage Academy. The Rebels held the Patriots to just122 yards of total offense in a 28-10 come-from-behind win Friday night in the semifinals.
“Just an absolute team effort. This is one of the best teams I’ve ever faced,” Rebels head coach David King said. “On the road in a tough environment. Our kids responded with an unbelievable second-half performance.”
Now the Rebels will be playing for the Class AAA state championship at 7 p.m. next Saturday at Jackson Academy against No. 1 seed Indianola Academy. The Colonels took care of No. 4 seed Central Hinds Academy34-3 in another semifinal match-up.
“This is their fourth straight state championship game. They whipped us pretty good two years ago,” King said.
Caston’s nine-yard touchdown run with 5:11 to go in the third quarter gave ACCS (5-7) a 12-10 lead. He then scored on a five-yard run less than a minute into the fourth quarter for an 18-10 Rebels lead.
With 4:22 remaining and the game still in doubt, the Rebels’ defense came up with a huge play as DJ Stampley sacked Patriots quarterback Carter Putt in the end zone for a safety to give ACCS a 20-10 lead.
The Rebels capped off the victory with 1 minute left when SterlingYarbrough ran in from four yards out and Dawson Parker added the two-point conversion run.
“Defense, special teams, big running plays,” King said. “We’ve got 24 players on the team and 24 contributed. Assistant coaches did a good job. Our crowd, four and a half hours away, was awesome.”
ACCS got off to a good start when Yarbrough connected with Kemari Clark on a 36-yard touchdown pass for a 6-0 lead with 3:57 remaining in the first quarter. But an interception by Yarbrough led to Heritage Academy (10-3) taking the lead on Moak Griffin’s 19-yard TD pass to Jared Long, which was followed by Lex Rogers’ extra point at the 1-minute mark.
Rogers made a 32-yard field goal with 7:51 remaining in the second quarter to give the Patriots a 10-6 lead, but that would be short-lived.
Yarbrough was 5-for-12 passing for 111 yards and one touchdown with the one pick.
Yohan Thompson had one catch for 36 yards and Caston had two receptions for 24 yards.
Defensively, Cory Sewell had six tackles while Caston had five tackles. Stampley ended up with two sacks and Clark had one fumble recovery.
The Rebels had a huge advantage in time of possession as they had the ball for 29 minutes and 52 seconds while the Patriots had the ball for just 18 minutes and eight seconds.
“We’ll celebrate this for a day and then get ready (for IndianolaAcademy). It was certainly a great day for the Rebels,” King said.