Woodrow Wilson senior quarterback Andrew Johnson had seen the scenario in each of the past two years.
His Flying Eagles facing an underdog Riverside team late in the year with a playoff berth hanging in the balance, and twice before Woodrow came up short (although the Eagles still made the playoffs at 5-5 last year).
However, Johnson was not about to let history repeat itself a third time.
Johnson threw his team on his back on Friday, rushing for a pair of touchdowns and throwing for two as the No. 11-ranked Flying Eagles spoiled the Warriors' homecoming with a 36-13 win in Quincy.
Johnson rushed for 99 yards and threw for 99, completing 8 of 12 passes.
"Last year and the year before that when we came up here, they got us," Johnson said. "That kicked us out of the playoffs my 10th-grade year, and if we'd have won that game we'd have been in the playoffs three years in a row because I plan on going this year, too."
Woodrow Wilson (6-3) sure looked like a playoff team the majority of the evening, as it squeezed the Riverside ground game to just 43 yards on 24 carries while churning out 265 rushing yards of its own.
"In the second half we just told them, 'We're going to ride our seniors,'" Woodrow coach John H. Lilly said. "'If you guys want to go to the playoffs, you've got to go out there and win tonight.'"
Early on, it looked like winning would be a given. The Flying Eagles scored on their first two possessions after forcing a pair of three-and-outs.
Marcus Mickey punched it in from 1 yard out to start the scoring and Johnson hit Ramon Edwards for a 17-yard touchdown on fourth-and-9 to end Woodrow's second drive in the first quarter. Woodrow was able to cash in on 2-point conversions on each occasion and the Flying Eagles had a quick 16-0 lead.
Johnson was efficient throughout the first half, completing 4 of 5 passes for 56 yards, and had a 32-yard touchdown pass to Edwards called back on a holding penalty.
Speaking of which, Woodrow went beyond shooting itself in the foot and nearly committed football suicide early on. The Flying Eagles were charged with 10 penalties for 90 yards in the first two quarters and 125 yards on 14 flags for the game.
"I just think everybody was jacked up," Lilly said. "We've played each other forever and it's kind of turned into a little bit of a rivalry game. I think our kids get jacked up for it a little bit."