Weekend recap: Denton’s streak ends

Denton senior quarterback Christian Rodriguez looks for an open receiver in a game earlier this season against Fort Worth Brewer. (David Minton/Denton Record-Chronicle)

It was a busy week of high school football on a weekend that featured three Thursday games. One team’s big streak ended, but not without a fight, and another team continued to impress despite several fresh faces.

Steve Gamel and I take a look at five of the biggest games of the weekend in our area.

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No movement for Guyer and Argyle on AP poll

Quarterback Shawn Robinson eludes a Keller Central defender. (Maegan Puetz/For the Record-Chronicle)

It appears there are people out there who are reading our AP blog!!! While there was no movement for both Guyer and Argyle, a couple of our other area schools at least got some votes on this week’s list after Adam and I made mentioned of their omissions last week. Guyer (6-1, 4-0 in District 5-6A) holds on to the No. 10 spot in the Class 6A poll while Argyle (7-0, 2-0 in District 6-4A DI) is still No. 2 in Class 4A.

As for our other area teams, Denton Ryan (5-2, 3-1 in District 5-6A) got one vote in the 6A poll while Lake Dallas (7-1, 4-0 in District 6-5A) also got a vote in 5A. Pilot Point (7-0, 2-0 in District 5-3A DI) earned a vote in the Class 3A poll.

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What you need to know: Keller Fossil Ridge

Spencer Sanders scrambles for extra yards against Trophy Club Nelson. (Mike Mezeul II/For the Record-Chronicle)

After a less-than stellar 2-2 start to the season, Ryan has reeled off back-to-back wins in District 5-6A against Trophy Club Nelson and Keller Timber Creek. The Raiders will head back out to Keller ISD Athletic Complex on Thursday to face Keller Fossil Ridge.

The Panthers are easily Ryan’s toughest challenge to date as they boast one of the more explosive offenses in the district. Fossil Ridge’s dud last week against Guyer is not a reflection of how formidable it will be down the stretch.

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Guyer, Argyle maintain respective spots on AP poll

Argyle's Drew Estrada catches a long pass against Carrollton Ranchview. (Matt Garnett/For the Record-Chronicle)

The latest AP poll has been released, with both Guyer and Argyle maintaining their respective spots. Guyer (5-1, 3-0 in District 5-6A) holds on to the No. 10 spot in the Class 6A poll while Argyle (6-0, 1-0) is still No. 2 in Class 4A.

Both had impressive wins this past week, so it will be interesting to see if either team moves higher in the coming weeks. Speaking of that, it is worth questioning when teams like Denton, Lake Dallas, Sanger and Pilot Point will earn some consideration.

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Weekend recap: Statement wins for all!


Guyer defensive lineman Isiah Correa (46) sacks Fossil Ridge quarterback Bryce Baccarini (4) during a high school football game in C. H. Collins Stadium in Denton, Texas on October 10, 2014. (Michael Clements/For the Record-Chronicle)

Several area teams scored big victories this week, as Guyer, Denton and Liberty Christian had what you might call “statement wins.”

Guyer put a thorough whuppin’ on what many believe is the second-best team in District 5-6A. Denton kept its foot on the pedal toward a 6-0 start, and Liberty Christian made a long road trip to face a formidable opponent and came home with a win.

Want Steve Gamel’s and my thoughts on these and some other area games? Well, you came to the right place.

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Guyer receivers making things tough on opponents

Guyer wide receiver Alex Honey splits two defenders on his way to a big gain against Keller at C.H. Collins Athletic Complex. (David Minton/Denton Record-Chronicle)

My good buddy Matt Wixon at The Dallas Morning News posted an interesting fact recently about total offense and balance in Dallas-Fort Worth area high school football, which for my money is the best area in high school football in this grand state.

Here’s Wixon’s note:

This season, four local teams — Allen, Denton Guyer, DeSoto and Lake Dallas — average at least 500 yards of offense and get no more than 60 percent of the total from rushing or passing. Their combined record is 20-2.

Now, everyone knows Guyer can run the football. That’s not news. They’ve also had some great passing attacks in past years, with 2010 standing out thanks to J.W. Walsh under center and a four-wide set that featured four Division I receivers. But other than that year, you won’t find a better passing attack in Guyer’s relatively brief history than this season’s.

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What you need to know: Keller Timber Creek

Ryan coach Dave Henigan looks on from the sidelines. Henigan and the Raiders look to continue their impressive defensive play from last week on the road against Keller Timber Creek on Thursday. (Matt Garnett/For the Record-Chronicle)

Ryan coach Dave Henigan preached all last week about the importance of protecting the ball on offense and playing sound defense. He got just that in a 17-13 win over Trophy Club Nelson. The Raiders’ defense pitched a shutout for the game’s final 45 minutes while the offense rallied to nab the team’s first win in District 5-6A.

This week, Ryan faces a Keller Timber Creek squad still looking for its first winning season. After a 3-0 start, the Falcons have combined to score 17 points in lopsided losses to Nelson and Keller Fossil Ridge. They do present some challenges, though, so this should be an interesting battle.

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Guyer drops a spot, Argyle still No. 2 in AP poll

Guyer sophomore QB Shawn Robinson throws a pass during Friday's win at Justin Northwest. (Matt Garnett/For the Record-Chronicle)

In the latest AP poll, Guyer (4-1, 2-0 in District 5-6A) dropped a spot to No. 10 in the Class 6A poll after a surprisingly-close win over Justin Northwest. Argyle (5-0) stands pat at No. 2 in the Class 4A poll.

The Eagles were on a bye week, but return to action this Thursday in the District 9-4A opener against Carrollton Ranchview. Guyer hosts Keller Fossil Ridge on Friday in a battle for early supremacy in district play.

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Weekend Recap: Denton ISD, where winners live

Denton junior running back Xavier Scott breaks free against Saginaw Boswell on Friday en route to a huge night in a huge Denton win. (James Coreas/For the Record-Chronicle)

All three Denton ISD teams came home Friday night with wins under their belts, and all three wins were meaningful district victories.

Take a look at the weekend recap with yours truly, and our new full-time Ryan beat writer, the legendary Steve Gamel.

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What you need to know: Trophy Club Nelson

Ryan's Keith Cole is dragged down by a Wylie East defender. (DRC File Photo)

Ryan is already behind the eight ball, so to speak, in District 5-6A after last week’s 37-29 loss at Keller Central. The funny thing is, the Raiders could have just as easily won this game had it not been for five turnovers. That’s right, five turnovers — and three were in the first half.

This week, the team comes back to the friendly confines of C.H. Collins Athletic Complex to host Trophy Club Nelson. The Raiders are hoping to avoid an uncharacteristic 0-2 district start. How uncharacteristic is it? Well, you’ll just have to wait and read my game advance story in tomorrow’s paper.

Game: Ryan (2-2, 0-1) vs Trophy Club Nelson (2-2, 1-0), 7 p.m., C.H. Collins Athletic Complex.

Series record: This is the first-ever meeting between the two schools.

What happened last week: Well, the Raiders scored just eight points in the first half thanks to three critical turnovers. The first came immediately after their own defense forced a Keller Central punt. Ryan returned that punt down to the Chargers’ 20-yard line but fumbled the ball at the nine-yard line two plays later. Quarterback Spencer Sanders was intercepted twice in the first half. Even with the miscues, Ryan was a touchdown and two-point conversion shy of tying the game up near the end of regulation.

Trophy Club Nelson had a much better night, in contrast. Quarterback Preston Haire threw for 218 yards and three touchdowns on just eight completions. Wide receiver Pascal Mondombo caught four of those balls for 161 yards. He accounted for all three scores. This took a lot of pressure off running back Courtney Miles, who is usually the focal point of the Bobcats’ offense. He carried the ball just 12 times for 54 yards and a score.

What to expect: A lot of Courtney Miles. This kid already has a 300-yard rushing game and another where he rushed for 294 against Birdville. Ryan coach Dave Henigan told me his defense prides itself on being able to stop the run, but admitted Miles is easily one of the best — if not the best — running back they’ve faced so far this season. The key to the game will be eliminating turnovers. If the Raiders can do that, they will be right back in the thick of this very impressive district race.

Ryan player to watch: LB Nick Watts

Trophy Club Nelson player to watch: RB Courtney Miles