PARADISE – The Paradise High School varsity football team finally got the start of the 2021 season on Thursday night, but the Bobcats lost to the Enterprise High 42-28 in a game where three turnovers hurt the Bobcats’ cause.
The Bobcats’ opening drive ended with a rumble inside the Hornet 11. On the next Paradise Next Drive, Tyler Harrison opened the scoring with a 26-yard touchdown run to give the Bobcats a 7-0 lead at 1:19 of the first quarter.
The Hornets responded with a seven-game 74-yard drive, which ended with a 12-yard touchdown pass from Demarea Lewis-Cooper to Holden Matthews and left the game 7-7 with 11:54 in the second quarter.
On the ensuing drive, the Paradise Hornets went into territory, only to have Alan Hernandez rip the ball off Bobcat quarterback Braden Gonzalez and drive it back 59 yards for a touchdown and take a 14–7 lead with 10:11 in the second quarter. .
Paradise tried to respond, driving the ball inside Hornet 10, only to see it hit a missed field goal. The drive was highlighted on third and 10 from a 28-yard pass from Gonzales to Harrison, who made a diving catch for the first down.
Just before half, Zahri Johnson returned a 71-yard bobcat punt to give the Hornets a 21-7 halftime lead.
After Johnson intercepted a Gonzales pass to open the third quarter, he left with 7:15 in the third quarter to give the visitors a 28-7 lead in Lewis-Cooper’s 22-yard touchdown throw.
Deacon Lamar-Simmons scored on the ensuing drive for the Bobcats, breaking several tackles in the third quarter with 3:35 to reduce the deficit to 28–14.
The Hornets put the game on ice when Lewis-Cooper rolled to his right in fourth and hit Elijah Goss on an 8-yard touchdown pass to lead 35–14 in the game to lead 10:14.
But Lamar-Simmons broke the 58-yard touchdown run with 8:47 and came back to within 35-21.
After the Bobcats forced the Hornets to punt, the Bobcats finished a 42-yard drive with a 22-yard touchdown pass from Gonzales to Harrison within 35-28 to finish with 2:56.
But on fourth and one on the Hornets 34, Lewis-Cooper scored a 66-yard run to reduce the score to 42-28.
Enterprise went 3-0 in the year with the win.
The Bobcats will host Central Valley next week in what was supposed to be their fourth consecutive home game to open the 2021 season.