|LONGVIEW - Tabbed a team strength before the season began, Longview's running attack lived up to all expectations Friday night.
Senior tailback O'Neal Jackson became the catalyst in the contest, running for 115 yards on 14 carries - including a 21-yard touchdown run - as an opportunistic Lobo squad blanked Fort Worth Paschal 28-0 here at Lobo Stadium.
Along with Jackson in the backfield, junior running back Joe Johnson picked up 66 yards in 11 to totes, most of that on a 30-yard touchdown run resulting in Longview's final score.
Quarterback Eric Harris added six points on a quarterback sneak, as well as connecting with wingback Charles Smith on an 18-yard touchdown strike in the contest.
The Lobos had wanted to control the football, and they managed to do just that in the second quarter, putting together a pair of long time-consuming drives resulting in 14 points.
Smith got the first-scoring drive started when he picked off an errant Alex Cox pass at Longview's 25-yard line.
From there Jackson began going to work, churning up chunks of yardage on pitches to the outside. Jackson put together run of nine, 10 and 16 yards in the drive, as Longview marched impressively to the Paschal 13.
An Eric Harris quarterback keeper moved the ball to the five, and two plays later, Longview's junior signal-caller snuck over the goal line for the game's first score.
The Lobos put together another drive later in the second quarter, once again with the ground game doing the dirty work.
Starting this time on Longview's 27-yard line, Jackson and Johnson advanced the ball up field again.
Then from the Panthers' 18, and with less than a minute showing on the second-quarter clock, Harris put up one of only four Lobo passes on the night. The pass was hauled in by Smith in the corner of the end zone, putting the Lobos comfortably out in front, 14-0 at intermission.
Paschal came out read to play in the third quarter, immediately putting together its best drive of the night.
Its ground game came alive as well, as Paschal running backs Derrick Williams and Matt Graves ran the ball to near the Lobos' 30 on hard-driving battles up the middle.
Then Longview's defense made a stand.
A Cox keeper on third down came up a single yard short. Then, electing to go for it on fourth down, Williams was held to no gain by a surging Longview front, thwarting the Panthers' closest scoring threat of the contest.
The opportunistic Lobos took advantage of a Panther fumble - recovered by Darrell Davis - and moved in for another touchdown in the third.
This time, a 17-yard pass from Harris to hard-running tight end Marlin Myers was the key play, moving the ball to the Paschal 21.
Then came Jackson's 21-yard touchdown scamper that advanced the score to 21-0.
Longview's final touchdown came in the fourth quarter.