[By Larry Krantz, Special to ETSN.fm]

ENNIS -- The Ennis Lions finally broke Whitehouse's defense and scored the go-ahead touchdown with 40 seconds remaining to escape with a 24-21 win Friday night in the District 17-5A opener at Lions Memorial Stadium.

After Ennis scored back-to-back touchdowns in the second half to cut the Whitehouse lead to 21-16, the Wildcats stopped running back Kyre Holloway on fourth-and-goal and the 1, and Javier Neal intercepted a pair of passes to snuff out consecutive Lions drives. But Neal was stripped of the ball after his second interception and Ennis was handed yet another scoring chance with just under 90 seconds to play.

The Lions drove 39 yards in seven plays and scored the game winner when quarterback Kade Graff threw a 14-yard catch-and-run touchdown pass to KD Davis for the Ennis' first lead of the game.

Whitehouse quarterback Tanner Roach threw his second interception of the game trying to throw a long pass as the clock ticked down, and Graff was able to kneel down on the final play of the game.

Ennis running back Tycen Thompson ran for 143 yards and a touchdown on 27 carries and added another three catches for 20 yards and a touchdown.

Whitehouse opened the scoring with a defensive touchdown when linebacker Braylon Shackleford recovered a Holloway fumble and returned it 64 yards for a score. 

Graff, who threw a pair of touchdowns, answered with his first, a 2-yard pass to Thompson.

Whitehouse answered with a 16-play, 75-yard drive capped by Khyree Key's 3-yard touchdown run with 2:17 remaining in the first half.

Trevor Oakley, who sealed the win by intercepting Roach's final pass of the night, also kicked a 40-yard field goal as the clock ran out on the first half.

Whitehouse (4-2, 0-1) plays host to Jacksonville next Friday at Wildcat Stadium. Ennis (4-2, 1-0) plays host to Lindale.