It was a big game for Eastside's Damario Terrell against county-rival Newton High School last Friday, but the Eagles' senior shone under the bright lights of Sharp Stadium in his season debut.
Terrell threw for 239 yards on 15-of-28 passing, connecting with his receivers for a pair of touchdowns in the win.
After leading 19-0 to open the game, Terrell and the Eagles trailed 28-27 with less than 2:30 in the contest. Down by a single point, Terrell led the Eagles on a final-minute scoring drive, connecting with wideout Anthony Henderson for a game-clinching 45-yard touchdown pass.
The win gave Eastside its second victory over the Newton program in as many years.
"I thought Damario had a great start," Eastside coach Rick Hurst said. "The team sort of hit a wall and things weren't going well, but the thing that is impressive is how he responded.
"His big play to Henderson was a great throw," he said. "He gave us a chance. I was really proud of him. He's been a tough competitor and has worked really hard."
Terrell said that it felt great beating the Rams, especially in the opening game of the season.
"It felt very good to win the game," Terrell said. "It's a big cross-town rivalry. A lot of people expect good things from the game and that's what we tried to give them."
Terrell said that he spent a lot of time this offseason preparing for the year, especially his rapport with his teammates.
"This year I've worked harder than I have my past three years," he said. "I've worked on my communication with my coaches and my linemen, and it is paying off."
The Eastside quarterback believes that the team is still hungry for wins, even after edging the Rams in the rivalry contest.
"We have to continue to play hard each and every snap," Terrell said.
Terrell and the Eagles return to the gridiron this Friday when they travel to Jackson to face the Jackson Red Devils.