Here’s a quick look at the scores and highlights from Friday’s Big Country regional semifinal games:
MANSFIELD – Maybe it’s not so bad to have a slow start — as long as you play as well as the San Saba Armadillos did in the second quarter Friday night.
San Saba scored 30 second-quarter points despite the wet weather conditions at Vernon Newsom Stadium and rallied for a dominating 57-14 win over the Bogata Rivercrest Rebels in a Class 2A Division I regional-round playoff game.
The No. 3-ranked Armadillos (13-0) advanced to play Valley View in next week’s state quarterfinals. San Saba beat Valley View in last year’s football playoffs, when the Armadillos advanced to the state semifinals.
DENTON — The Cooper Cougars got off to about as strong a start as they could have hoped for Friday in their Region I-5A Division I semifinal matchup against Denton Ryan. But once the Raiders got going, they never let up in a 58-20 win on a mist-soaked field at C.H. Collins Athletic Complex.
After intercepting Ryan quarterback Seth Henigan on the second play of the game and scoring on a 24-yard run by Noah Garcia to go up 7-0, Cooper surrendered 44 unanswered points — 30 of those before halftime — to close their season at 11-2.
The game was tied at 7-all at the end of the first quarter, but a 23-0 Raider run through the second quarter put the Coogs in a hole they couldn’t dig out of.
VERNON — The Cisco Loboes season — and possible Class 3A Division II era — came to an end on Friday in a sloppy 55-28 loss to top-ranked Canadian in a Region I semifinal at Lion Stadium.
The No. 6-ranked Loboes, who saw their season end at 11-2, had three first-half turnovers — and four overall — en route to falling into a 41-0 halftime hole.
Cisco, which is projected to drop to Class 2A Division I during the UIL’s biennial realignment in February, was outgained 514-413 by the Wildcats. The Loboes put up 319 yards in the second half on 33 plays after being shut down offensively in the first half.
IOWA PARK — It may not have been the prettiest performance in Brock history. But when Cash Jones crossed the goal line of Friday’s 20-17 regional semifinal win over Bushland, nobody wearing blue seemed to mind.
Trailing 17-14 following a 41-yard field goal by Baylor Gillispie in Bushland’s half of the overtime, the Eagles closed deal by pushing 25 yards in four plays, capped by Jones’ run to the right corner of the end zone.
LAST WEEK: 12-3, .800
SEASON TOTAL: 475-90, .841
Entering Thanksgiving weekend with 12 football teams that are still alive, the Big Country has a solid opportunity to push multiple clubs into December.
As one would expect, everything at this point will be a difficult hurdle and it will only get tougher from this point forward.
Before I dive into this week’s playoff forecast, we at BigCountryPreps.com would like to extend our wishes to you for the happiest of Thanksgivings.
That said, let’s have a look at this week’s games.
During his time at Hawley, Mitch Ables has steadily built the long-suffering Bearcat football program into an area contender. This year, he has the ‘Cats on their deepest run ever after the first area-round playoff victory in program history over defending state runner-up New Deal last Friday.
Earlier this week, Ables took some time to chat with Big Country Preps’ Evan Ren and Daniel Youngblood about this year’s team, which is unbeaten heading into Friday’s Region I-2A Division I semifinal matchup against Sundown (8-4), for the Capital Farm Credit Wednesday Night Podcast.
Also in this episode Evan and Daniel discuss their takeaways from the second round of the high school football playoffs and preview this week’s third round.
Continue to check back at BigCountryPreps.com each Wednesday night at 7 p.m. when Evan and Dan discuss the current happenings in Big Country High School sports — often with an interesting sports figure from around the area.
You can also peruse our BCP Podcast archive, which features dozens of our previous shows with prominent coaches and Big Country media fixtures.
Inquiries regarding these podcasts may be directed to Evan Ren at Evan.Ren@BigCountryPreps.com.
If you have a suggested topic of conversation or a recommended guest, don’t hesitate to contact us!
HAWLEY — After devising an extra-large version of the wildcat formation for two-point conversions and short-yardage situations, Hawley football coach Mitch Ables did what most people in his profession would do: He gave the set the generic name of “Jumbo.”
For the Hawley players, however, “Jumbo” was just too boring. And besides, it seemed to undersell the actual size of the formation.
They may have had a point, considering Ables’ creation features seven true offensive linemen (no tight ends) in a double-tight set up front and three additional offensive linemen in the backfield, usually with 200-pound running back Colton Marshall running behind them.
Trailing Lubbock Cooper 41-29 after three quarters, the Abilene Cooper boys basketball team rallied in the fourth to make a game of it. But a barrage of late 3-pointers wasn’t quite enough in a 56-54 loss Tuesday at Cougar Gym.
Kaden Davis banked in a 3 with just a couple of seconds left to trim the deficit to two. But with no timeouts remaining, the Cougars were helpless to stop the clock, allowing the Pirates to win without inbounding the ball.