There was plenty of fireworks, literally and figuratively speaking, at Frank McClellan Field Friday evening as the opening round of the high school playoffs got underway. Barton broke out of the gates quickly as Devin Olloway scored on a 90-yard run on the Bears first touch of the night. The Bears went on to post a 40-33 victory over the Paris Eagles.

There was plenty of fireworks, literally and figuratively speaking, at Frank McClellan Field Friday evening as the opening round of the high school playoffs got underway. Barton broke out of the gates quickly as Devin Olloway scored on a 90-yard run on the Bears first touch of the night. The Bears went on to post a 40-33 victory over the Paris Eagles.

Call this game a nail-biter, barn-burner, cliff-hanger, or whatever other analogies you can come up with.

The Eagles appeared to have the playoff jitters as penalties and fumbles plagued their first couple of possessions. Their opening drive made it to the Barton 48 before it eventually fizzled.

Barton got another opportunity to score when Paris fumbled the ball away. However, a major penalty and a completed pass and fumble halted that drive.

In the second quarter, the Bears began having problems controlling the Eagles running attack.

At the 8:34 mark of the second quarter, Paris got on the scoreboard. A 22-yard touchdown scamper capped off the lengthy drive. A successful 2-point conversion knotted the score at 8-8.

It took the Bears 2:03 to respond. Barton got excellent field position thanks to failed on-side kick attempt. Quarterback Matt James broke loose and scrambled 21 yards for the Bears' second touchdown of the night at the 6:31 mark of the second quarter. Wilkins tacked on the 2-point conversion to put Barton up 16-8.

Throughout the contest, Paris was their own worst enemy with penalties and fumbles continuing to squander opportunity after opportunity. Still, Paris proved to be a worthy adversary and were much tougher than their 4-6 regular season mark indicated.

What appeared to be developing into a defensive battle in the first half, turned into an old-fashioned shootout in the second half.

It was deja vu as Olloway opened the second half with a 79-yard from scrimmage. However, this run was negated by a costly holding penalty. A few plays later, Olloway repeated his performance, this time with an 86-yard gallop to the Paris 4. It was almost like watching an instant replay.

Wanya Wilkins gave the Bears a little breathing room when scored on a 4-yard touchdown run with 10:11 to play in the third quarter. At this point, the Bears were up 24-8.

Just under three minutes later, Paris put together a 72-yard drive that concluded with a 41-yard touchdown run. The 2-point conversion pass failed but the Eagles had closed the gap 24-14. That ended the fourth quarter scoring.

Then, the fireworks really began. The teams put a combined 35 points on the scoreboard during the final 12 minutes of action.

Barton widened their advantage to 32-14 after Jaylon Johnson picked off an Eagle pass and returned it to the Paris 5. From there, Kenyan Davis toted the ball into the end zone . He also added the 2-point conversion.

While the fan enthusiasm remained high, one fan was overheard to say, "This game isn't over yet. "

Those words turned out to be prophetic.

Paris put together another long, impressive drive and scored on a 2-yard run. The 2-point conversion pass failed but the Eagles had made it a 2-possession game with 6:51 to play at 32-20.

The Eagles' on-side kick attempt failed. Davis set up Barton's final score with a 43-yard run from scrimmage. Wilkins scored from tree yards out and the Bears were up 40-20.

Bear fans began squirming in their seats when Barton fumbled the ensuing onside kick. With 2:30 to play Paris scored on 7-yard run but the extra point kick failed. It was now 40-26.

Yet another fumble gave the Eagles additional life. A 2-yard run and extra point made it 40-33 with 1:26 remaining.

Paris got one last shot but eventually turned the ball over on downs with just 40 ticks left on the clock. Barton managed to hold off a late rally by the Eagles and advance to the second round of the playoffs.

Barton travels westward to challenge Charleston Friday night for round 2.