It’s been a pretty usual thing for us to see two high schools from Denton ISD in the Texas high school football playoffs, and that’s the case this year, too. It’s a different duo this year, but the results were the same as both Guyer and Denton won their playoff openers.
Steve Gamel and I recap the area playoff action from the weekend and look ahead a bit to Round 2 with this week’s recap.
AB: Listen, I’ve been trying to tell people for weeks now that Guyer’s offense was unstoppable. Say what you want about Plano, but what can’t be said is that it had a bad defense. In fact, Plano entered the game with the fifth-ranked defense among all Class 6A defenses in Dallas-Fort Worth. It was legit. And Shawn Robinson and the Guyer offense made it look silly. Again, for the final time, let me say this: Guyer might not have the best offense in Texas, but there isn’t one better, and I’ll keep saying that. Plano’s offense on Saturday was pretty vanilla, but Guyer’s defense came to play after Plano tied the game early by answering Robinson’s 71-yard scoring scamper on the second play of the game. The key sequence came at the end of the half when Plano’s last-second attempt to score a touchdown was stuffed by Guyer to end a 19-play drive that covered 7:09 and gave Plano nothing to show for it. It was a huge momentum boost, even if it resulted in some teamwide cramping on Guyer’s defense later in the game, and it’s a big bit of confidence going into this week’s titanic matchup with Southlake Carroll.
SG: Shawn Robinson proved he can be an elite quarterback on the Texas high school football playoff stage, and he did it in a big way with 429 total yards and four touchdowns (one rush, three passing) in Guyer’s romp of Plano in Saturday’s Class 6A bi-district playoff at AT&T Stadium. Not too shabby for a playoff debut. I had someone come up to me late last week trying to convince me that the Wildcats wouldn’t make it past the first round. I couldn’t have disagreed more considering the Wildcats have never lost a playoff opener – regardless of the classification. In fact, I went so far as to say Guyer would also topple Southlake Carroll, its opponent this coming Saturday. Not to be outdone, Anthony Taylor scored four times against Plano as Guyer racked up 556 total yards. The Wildcats are in it for the long haul, I’m telling you.
AB: Well, the Broncos tried to make things interesting by letting Birdville nearly come back and shock them, but for much of the night, there wasn’t much interesting about this game as Denton’s offense just continued to put up points and points and points on points. Xavier Scott is putting his name at the top of the list of running backs in the area after another huge game with 190 yards on 43 carries, but hey, I guess he was fresh after missing some time with injury. From a historic perspective, it was a huge, huge night for Denton football and a big day for Kevin Atkinson, who led the Broncos to their first playoff win since 2002 in his third season at the helm. It’s been a long, arduous process from the days of Denton fielding 23 players for a game against Guyer (I counted), but the Broncos are alive and well now, and it’s good for the area football scene.
SG: Congrats to the Broncos, who picked up their first playoff win since 2002. Denton had its hands full against Birdville running back Isaiah Duarte, who was the leading rusher in Class 5A coming in. Duarte rushed for 212 yards and scored four times, but the Broncos’ offense never faltered and the defense came up with a huge sack to preserve a 40-33 win. It must have been nice to have Xavier Scott back in the lineup. The Broncos’ star running back racked up 190 yards and two touchdowns on a staggering 43 carries. That took a ton of pressure of quarterback Christian Rodriguez, who completed 11 of his 18 passes for 202 yards. Key’andre Hearvey caught seven of those passes for 118 yards. Next up is an even tougher challenge as the Broncos travel back to Northwest ISD Stadium this Friday to face Aledo.
AB: I tweeted to Steve from Argyle’s volleyball game that this game would be “over” by 7:43 p.m., with its scheduled start time of 7:30 p.m. I wasn’t far off. Cooper Rodgers had a big day with limited work, throwing just 13 passes but completing all 13 and tossing six touchdowns in a game the Eagles literally could’ve won with a full week off of practice and no preparation – I really believe that. After we all thought Argyle was going to have a rebuilding year after they lost that huge, talented senior class last year, it now appears Argyle is the favorite to win the Class 4A Division I title. Pretty amazing.
SG: If you are a big believer in trends, than Argyle punched its ticket to the area round of the playoffs a long time ago. The Eagles are now 8-0 in playoff openers since 2007, and they have won all of them in convincing fashion. On Friday, they beat a hapless Lake Worth team, 70-7. Cooper Rodgers was electric, passing for 228 yards and a new school record six touchdowns. What’s even more impressive, he was a perfect 13-for-13 passing.
AB: Gary Robinson is a good guy and has done a fine job in starting Krum’s football program from scratch. On Friday night, he saw his hard work pay off with the program’s first playoff victory in a game that was not even close. Granted, it’s been really helpful for Krum to avoid matchups with Celina and Argyle in the first round – as it has every other year it’s made the playoffs – but Krum played who was on the schedule and made it count.
SG: I was at this game, and there is no way to truly put into words the excitement and relief Krum players, coaches and fans had on their faces when the final horn sounded. If you don’t know, this was the Bobcats’ first playoff win in school history. They’d made playoffs in each of their first three seasons as a varsity program, but had lost the first two to state powers Celina and Argyle, respectively. On Thursday, Krum forced six turnovers and won 40-6.
AB: Chuck Galbreath just might be pushing his name into area Coach of the Year conversation. Guy has his team off to a blazing start and loses one of the best running backs in the state midway through the season. Then, at the end of the year, he loses his quarterback. No worries, says Galbreath, who just inserts a freshman quarterback and wins a playoff game with a good matchup coming up against this week against Paris. That coaching staff, and the kids, deserve a ton of credit for battling through tons of adversity.
SG: I hope C.J. Jackson got to keep the game ball. Sanger was in bad shape coming into this first round game, having lost its star running back Tre’von Jackson and quarterback Brandon Mann. All Jackson – a freshman – did was complete nine of his 12 passes for 92 yards while rushing for 52 more yards and a score while leading Sanger to a 31-21 win.