Eastside held off a furious fourth-quarter comeback attempt by Laurens Friday night, escaping with a 36-34 victory over the visiting Raiders.
The Eagles jumped out to a 24-0 lead by halftime, but the Raiders scored 26 points in the fourth quarter to pull within two points with 2:10 left in the game. Eastside stopped a two-point conversion attempt, stuffing quarterback Nick Danciu at the line of scrimmage.
With the loss, the Raiders (2-8 overall, 2-2 Region 2-4A) end the regular season and await playoff seeding. A win over Eastside would have secured a home playoff game for LDHS, but after a bye next Friday, the Raiders will almost certainly open the Class 4A playoffs on the road.
Eastside running back Kalvin Banks ran for 179 yards on 33 carries with four touchdowns, including all three Eastside scores in the first half. The Eagles rolled up 287 yards rushing.
LDHS finally got on the scoreboard in the third quarter on a 56-yard touchdown pass from Nick Danciu to Josh Goodwin. Following a 2-point conversion pass from Danciu to Nick Fowler, the Raiders trailed 24-8.
Danciu threw for two touchdowns, adding a 13-yard score to Malik Jackson with 9:55 left in the fourth quarter, which was the beginning of the Raiders’ rally.
Danciu added three touchdown runs – from 4, 11 and 2 yards – in the final period. He completed 17 of 27 passes for 252 yards on the night.
After Danciu’s 11-yard run with 5:03 to play, Brock Franklin’s point-after attempt was blocked, which forced the Raiders to go for a 2-point conversion after a 2-yard Danciu run cut the Eagles’ lead to 36-34 with 2:10 remaining.
Eastside (5-4, 1-2) will host Wade Hampton (2-7, 0-3) next Friday. A victory over the Generals will give the Eagles the No. 3 seed from Region 2-4A, and the Raiders will be the No. 4 seed. Riverside and Greer will face off in a game that will determine the region championship.
Eastside 36, Laurens 34
EHS – Kalvin Banks 2 run (Banks run), 8-0, 1:10.
EHS – Banks 10 run (James Odom pass from Peyton Schrader), 16-0, 8:26.
EHS – Banks 2 run (Schrader run), 24-0, 1:13
LDHS – Josh Goodwin 56 pass from Nick Danciu (Nick Fowler pass from Danciu), 24-8, 4:16.
EHS – Banks 13 run (pass failed), 30-8, 3:14.
EHS – Maldravious Brown 8 run (kick failed), 36-8, 11:47.
LDHS – Malik Jackson 13 pass from Danciu (Brock Franklin kick), 36-15, 9:55.
LDHS – Danciu 4 run (Franklin kick), 36-22, 8:04.
LDHS – Danciu 11 run (kick blocked), 36-28, 5:03.
LDHS – Danciu 2 run (run failed), 36-34, 2:10.