Despite a slow start, miscues and a second quarter surge from the Panthers, the Life High School Mustangs made the most of their trip to Paradise High School and came away with 28-21 victory Friday at Paradise High School Field.

The Mustangs were led by senior quarterback Jalen Crawford, who took the mustangs on four scoring drives, three ending in rushing touchdowns.

Life High School head coach Heath Blalock said Crawford and his Mustangs ran the triple option to perfection. The move is an offensive scheme that forces defenses to worry about multiple running options on a single play and uses three players to run the ball instead of two used in the standard option run.

“Jalen had 155 yards rushing,” said Blalock. “You can’t run an offense much better than that. We run a style of the triple option so we can maximize the talent on the field. In our offense, Crawford will have the option to either run or throw the football on the majority of our snaps.”

Junior fullback Bryson Shull also had a strong showing, finishing with nearly 100 yards rushing.

The Mustang defense, despite giving up 14 unanswered points in the first half, rallied with a dominant performance down the stretch. Led by senior defenders Alex Rodriguez, Johnathan Hurst and Conner Lee, that same defense did not allow a second half score.

The Life High School Mustangs will look to tally the first win of the season when they play the Itasca High School Wampus Cats at 7:30 p.m. on Friday at Itasca High School Field.

The Wampus Cats are coming off a 58-33 season opening loss to Meridian High School.

Blalock said he has four years of experience and Itasca plays hard and brings a lot of talent to the field.

“Damarcus Parkerson and Wayne Arellano are serious threats with the ball in their hands,” said Blalock. “They will challenge us in many situations.”