LUFKIN - In an otherwise defense-less contest, Longview put the breaks on Lufkin's run-and-shoot in the final quarter to capture a thrilling 36-27 victory Friday night at Abe Martin Stadium in both team's District 12-5A opener.
It was an offensive showcase with both teams combining for 969 yards.
For Longview, tailback Andre Davis had the third-best rushing performance in school history with 268 yards on 45 carries and three touchdowns. Quarterback Jason Dodson completed 10 of 16 passes for 200 yards and two touchdowns.
Split end John Washington pulled in seven receptions for 168 yards and two scores.
On the other side of the field, Panther quarterback Eugene Jones finished with a 23-of-52 passing performance for a career-best 332 yards and two touchdowns. Derrick James rumbled of 226 yards on 23 carries for a touchdown.
It was that kind of night.
Bobby Taylor's interception at Longview's one-yard line and a sack of Jones by Chad Daniels on the final play put the game into the win column for the Lobos as they improved to 5-1 overall. Lufkin drops to 4-2.
Trailing 27-21 on Rob Baldwin field goals of 29 and 20 yards in the third quarter, Longview moved back on top as Davis broke through the middle and scampered down the left sideline for 45 yards with 49 second left in the quarter.
With 7:06 to play, Dodson tossed a 27-yard pass to Washington, who was wide open at the six-yard line, to give Longview a seven-point lead, 34-27. Davis then tallied his second two-point conversion of the game to provide a nine-point cushion.
Both teams started the offensive assault in the first half. A 21-21 tie seemed only natural at intermission.
Longview jumped out to a 14-0 lead with 1:12 left in the first quarter as Washington pulled in a Dodson pass out between two Lufkin defenders and raced 61 yards for the score. Davis added a two-point conversion run for the Lobos.
Davis, who had a yeoman's first half with 17 yards on 24 carries, dove into the end zone from three yards out at the 7:04 mark of the opening quarter on Longview's first possession of the game. However Brian Payne's extra point attempt went wide to the right as the Panthers put on a heavy rush.
Davis scored again with 1:45 elapsed in the second quarter on a 45-yard sprint down the left sideline as Longview faced a fourth and two call.
But Jones continually rallied the Panthers with touchdown passes of 31 and 39 yards. The last coming with 2:13 left before halftime as a diving Damari Bryant pulled in an over-the-shoulder catch.
Jones and Bryant connected on the first points for the Panthers with 51 seconds showing in the opening 12 minutes. James set up the touchdown with a 37 yard burst up the middle.
The Lobos lost a scoring opportunity in the closing minutes of the half as Davis fumbled at Lufkin's 12-yard yard line. The Panthers then drove back up the field at Longview's 20 before Taylor blocked Baldwin's 37-yard field goal attempt with four second left.
The Panthers also fumbled away a scoring drive early in the contest as Jones tossed an errant pitch on a first-and-goal at Longview's six.