The Lakewood Ranch High football team held off Tarpon Springs in the second half, defeating the Spongers 41-34 to earn its second district victory of the season.
Trailing 7-0, Lakewood Ranch running back Chris Pearcey scored from 2 yards out with 11 seconds remaining in the first quarter to tie the game.
Pearcey added a 3-yard touchdown run with 1:12 remaining in the first half to pull the Mustangs within a point at 14-13.
Lakewood linebacker Wanley Desir intercepted a Tarpon Springs pass at the Mustangs 24-yard line and returned it to the Spongers 29-yard line, which set up a 29-yard touchdown run by Ty McLeod. Quarterback Chad Rex added a two-point conversion to give the Mustangs a 21-14 lead heading into the locker room.
After a rain-soaked second quarter and a lightning delay, Lakewood scored a pair of touchdowns early in the third quarter on a 12-yard run by Pearcey and a 60-yard touchdown pass from Rex to Ty McLeod to give the Mustangs a 34-14 lead.
Lakewood added another touchdown, which proved to be the difference as the Spongers scored three second-half touchdowns of their own.
Lakewood returns to district action Oct. 19 at Dixie Hollins.
For a complete story on tonight’s game pick up the Oct. 11 issue of the East County Observer.