OHATCHEE — It wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows for Ohatchee, but the Indians got the job done Friday night.
Ohatchee used a second-half offensive explosion to put away Southeastern 55-13 and advance to the second round of the Class 2A playoffs.
On their first seven plays of the second half, the Indians racked up 242 yards and four touchdowns.
Domonique Thomas opened the third quarter with a 57-yard touchdown run, and Ryker Lambright followed it up with a 60-yard score on the Indians’ next offensive play.
Thomas found the end zone from 9 yards out to cap a four-play, 68-yard drive on Ohatchee’s ensuing possession before Noah Fuller raced 67 yards for a touchdown on yet another one-play drive.
The first half was a different story. Despite holding a 20-0 lead after two quarters, the offense was sluggish at times.
“I was disappointed in the way that we played,” Ohatchee coach Scott Martin said. “It was the first game that I felt like we came out and mentally we weren’t real sharp early in the game. It was very frustrating. I don’t think the game was ever in doubt, but that’s no excuse to come out and not be fundamentally sound and not be sharp.
“We made a few adjustments in the second half, and talked to our kids about their focus, and boom, boom, boom, before you knew it, we were off and running. I was very proud of their second-half effort, but you aren’t going to be able to do that against good football teams in the playoffs and win football games.”
What to know
—Thomas finished the game with 250 rushing yards and five touchdowns on 17 carries. The senior running back scored on runs of 11, 82, 4, 57 and 9 yards.
—Lambright finished with 96 yards on five carries.
—Trey Pesnell scored the Indians’ final touchdown of the night on a 15-yard run.
—Ohatchee’s defense forced three first-half turnovers. Cade Williamson and Nathan Higgins each recovered a fumble, and Williamson intercepted a pass.
—Eli Ennis returned to action on the defensive side of the ball after breaking his thumb against Gaston two weeks ago. Cam Foushee started at quarterback for the second straight week.
—Martin on his halftime message: “The locker room message at halftime was just, ‘Do your job. Disappointed in your lack of focus, so let’s lock-in the second half and go out and take care of business.’”
—Martin on Ohatchee’s defense: “Your offense is going to have nights where it sputters, but your defense has got to be able to pick you up, and our defense did that and kept the game manageable and kept giving us opportunities, and we finally got on board with it.”
—Thomas on preparing for the next round: “We’ve got to have a better week of practice, and we’ve got to have a lot more energy coming into this game.”
—Ohatchee (10-0) will host Collinsville (10-1) in the second round of the playoffs next week. Collinsville defeated Colbert County 63-18 in the first round.