Every year it always feels like things are moving faster, where two months ago feels like two weeks ago.
We’re almost at the end of the regular season before leaves could change colors. But the true sign of a Texas autumn comes in two weeks, when the playoffs start and teams chase state the dream they had since August.
Last weekend, Guyer picked up another easy win, while Ryan and Denton each lost to very good teams. Sanger had a narrow win over winless Bridgeport, while Liberty Christian dropped a close contest to Fort Worth Nolan.
Adam Boedeker and I delve into all of those games in today’s Weekend Recap.
Ben Baby: The best part of Friday night for Ryan occurred well after the whistle. That’s when Flower Mound beat Flower Mound Marcus 30-27 IN TRIPLE OVERTIME, securing a 14th straight playoff berth for Ryan.
Just like last season, Coppell completed dominated Ryan. But unlike last year, Ryan was pretty healthy but it couldn’t get anything going against the Raiders. Ryan failed to pick up a first down in the second half, summing up how Friday night went.
In the two seasons Ryan’s been in District 5-5A, Ryan failed to beat Hebron and Coppell. A strong performance against Flower Mound, and not just a win, could do great things for Ryan’s confidence going into the playoffs.
Adam Boedeker: It’s not a question if Ryan and head coach Joey Florence were happy with their performance on Friday, but getting beat like the Raiders did by Coppell is nothing new to the Cowboys’ opponents.
The good news for Ryan? When the Raiders hit the postseason in two weeks (after they beat Flower Mound on Friday) they’ll do so in Division II, meaning they won’t have to face Coppell again and will be placed in a much more wide-open small-school bracket of Class 5A.
Ryan struggled offensively, but again, lots of teams do that against Coppell, one of the best defensive teams in the area. The Raiders managed a season-low 195 total yards on the night but playing Flower Mound next week should be a nice cure for any woes Ryan might have had last week.
Baby: Give credit to Denton for making this contest much closer than a lot of people thought it’d be. The Broncos were leading 20-14 in the second quarter before Rider ripped off 17 straight points in a 51-41 win that ended the Broncos’ playoff hopes.
Denton came in as the heavy underdog, a fact clearly evident by head coach Kevin Atkinson’s PAT choices. Instead of electing to kick an extra point after Denton’s first touchdown, the Broncos went for two and failed. Denton actually went for two on its first three touchdowns before Rider took its lead.
I’m guessing Atkinson figured he needed all the points he could get against Rider. If that’s the case, he was right.
Boedeker: Guyer showed last week that Wichita Falls Rider’s defense could be had, and to Denton’s credit, the Broncos reiterated the idea on Friday night. Denton lost the game, and with it any hope it had at the postseason, but in a way, it was a big game for a program that appears to be on the uptick.
Rider created separation later in the game but the Broncos kept fighting and got to within the 51-41 final in the final minutes of the game. Denton quarterbacks Christian Rodriguez (290 yards) and Cy Ward (217) combined for more than 500 passing yards, but the Denton defense couldn’t do enough to hold off a high-powered Rider offense led by Chase London.
Baby: Oh look. Guyer beat Wichita Falls 49-3. You want to know what the most important thing about this win is?
It means we’re another week closer to watching a game where Guyer won’t be ahead by 30 points at halftime. We’ll be closer to watching a team actually come close to beating Guyer before the Wildcats pounce on their hapless opponent in the fourth quarter.
Guyer’s playing like a team that won the state championship last season and returned most of its key starters. I think Guyer’s been ready for the playoffs since August, if not earlier.
Boedeker: After being held scoreless the previous week against Rider for the first quarter, Guyer rolled on to a 56-30 win in that game. Even in victory, Guyer head coach John Walsh wanted to see his team correct their slow starts, something that’s plagued the Wildcats at times this year.
After Friday’s 49-3 win over the Wichita Falls Coyotes, he was much happier. Guyer scored on its first two possessions (and three of its first four) of the game while adding touchdowns on its first two possessions of the second half, as well. After struggling at times in the passing game, Jerrod Heard had possibly his best game of the season throwing the ball with several accurate balls that were on target.
In three quarters of play, Heard threw for 190 yards and rushed for 70 while the Guyer running backs again had huge performances. D.J. Breedlove scored three touchdowns while Guyer’s No. 1A running back, Anthony Taylor, scored twice. And that Guyer defense? Dominant. The Wildcats allowed one second-half first down to Wichita Falls and just 26 yards in the second half.
Baby: Well, this game was almost a catastrophic loss for the Indians. If Sanger lost to previously winless Bridgeport team, the last week of the season could have been very interesting.
And by interesting, I mean Sanger could miss the playoffs. But Sanger scored 24 unanswered points for a 45-37 win. The Indians make the postseason after going winless last season mostly because of running back Tre’von Jackson. Jackson, who was at Denton last season, racked up 250 yards and two touchdowns in the win.
Boedeker: The taste of a 14-game losing skid spanning three seasons is officially gone now, as the Sanger Indians clinched a playoff berth with a comeback win over last-place Bridgeport on Friday.
Tre’von Jackson continued his dominant run this season with another huge game, rushing for 250 yards and two touchdowns, most of which came in the second half, after the Indians trailed 30-21 at halftime.
Baby: Liberty did a good job of holding Nolan to six points in the second half, but the Warriors couldn’t erase a 14-point halftime deficit in 41-31 loss. Liberty quarterback Colby Moore rushed for 195 yards and threw for 128 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions. Nolan held Liberty running back JonAaron Howell from posting big numbers like he has all season. Howell had 49 rushing yards and a touchdown in the loss. Liberty finishes the season in third place in TAPPS District 1-A.