Shut out in the first half with its star quarterback sidelined by an injury, Ravenwood changed its game plan.

The Raptors ran the ball up the middle relentlessly, rallying for a 20-10 win over visiting Independence in a regular-season finale Friday night.

Ravenwood quarterback Chris Parson, a Florida State commit, sat out with a lower-body injury as a precaution for next week’s playoffs.

“Chris was out, so it changed what we were doing a little bit,” Raptors coach Will Hester said. “It was a mindset kind of game. In my opinion, you’ve got to have a little bit of physicality to be good at this game.”

Sixth-ranked Ravenwood (8-2, 4-1 Region 7-6A) hosts Whitehaven (7-3) in the first round of the Class 6A playoffs next week.

Independence (4-6, 2-3) visits fourth-ranked Collierville (10-0).

Hester and his staff challenged the Raptors’ offense and they responded.

Down 3-0 at halftime, Ravenwood roared back with 20 consecutive points by scoring on its first three possessions of the second half.

Tailback J.T. Smitherman started the rally with a 36-yard touchdown run up the middle early in the third quarter, Carter Pace followed with a 17-yard TD run and Kartuah Chapman’s 8-yard TD burst increased the Raptors’ lead to 20-3 with 8:24 left as a light drizzle fell on the artificial turf.

“They just couldn’t stop us and we kept doing it the rest of the game subbing out our plays,” Carter said. “Our line was just pancaking everyone. They’re one of the best lines in the state.”

Carter rushed for 144 yards and one TD on 18 carries. Chapman added 98 rushing yards and one TD. Smitherman had 68 yards and one TD in the Raptors’ simple, but effective second-half approach.

“We threw a tight end in there in the second half that we hadn’t played all season with,” Hester said. “We wanted to make sure (Chris’ lower-body injury) was healed up well for the playoffs.”

Parson passed for three TDs and ran for three more in last week’s win over Pope John Paul II.

“It was time for us to see how we would handle a game without Chris,” Hester said.

Brenden Dickinson filled in for Parson, but Ravenwood relied on its tailbacks.

“They definitely ran up the middle on us and we couldn’t stop them,” Eagles coach Scott Blade said.

Joe Cummings found Jack Rummell in the end zone for a 3-yard strike with 4:46 left to narrow the deficit to 20-10, but the onside kick failed and Ravenwood ran out the clock.

Cummings passed for 149 yards and one TD, but the Raptors contained the Eagles for most of the night as Indy’s offense kept stalling.

“We were stopping their little bubble pass and we were stopping them on the run with their very powerful running back,” said Smitherman, who also plays linebacker. “So all we had to do was stop them at the line and get them out of their regular stuff.”

Ravenwood held Indy running back Tre Hartwell to 55 rushing yards on 13 carries.

The Raptors held the Eagles 20.3 points below their scoring average.

Hester improved his record to 46-6 at Ravenwood. The Raptors increased their lead in the series with the Eagles to 13-3.