Tag: Abilene High Eagles

WHAT MIGHT HAVE BEEN: AHS star Washington left quite an impression on coach, program

The “What Might Have Been” feature series is Big Country Preps’ effort to celebrate area athletes who have seen their seasons affected by the COVID-19 outbreak. The series will continue through June 15. If you have a suggested story for the “What Might Have Been” series, please contact Big Country Preps at Evan.Ren@BigCountryPreps.com.

Abilene High softball coach Jim Reese considers shortstop Alyssa Washington a once-in-a-career type player. 

And with a multi-decade coaching tenure that started on the baseball diamond and included a stretch with longtime major leaguer John Lackey, that’s no faint praise.

So to watch the future Texas Longhorn see her time at Abilene High cut short in the midst of a truly remarkable senior campaign was one of the tougher things Reese has had to do as a coach. And though he’s happy that Washington will get to continue her career in Austin and certain she’ll find success at the next level, he can’t help but wonder what the standout might have accomplished had her season not been derailed by the COVID-19 outbreak.

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GAME STORY: Abilene High tripped up by Tascosa in opener

Despite a massive discrepancy in snaps and time of possession, the Mike Fullen-led Abilene High Eagles had their chances in Friday’s opener against Amarillo Tascosa. But a couple of late mistakes proved too much to overcome in a hard-fought 19-14 loss at Shotwell Stadium.

AHS led 7-6 at halftime and rallied to take a 14-13 lead on the first play of the fourth quarter. But a muffed punt allowed Tascosa to retake the lead with 9:17 remaining, and an interception inside the 15 on the Eagles’ ensuing possession allowed the Rebels to kill the rest of the clock with a series of clutch third-down conversions.

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FEATURE: Abilene High ace Washington, catcher Lopez a winning combination

Kaylen Washington’s success in the circle this season has been well documented during the Abilene High softball team’s historic run to its current 19-1-2 record.

The senior right-hander’s emergence as a true and legitimate ace has been the chief storyline in the Lady Eagles’ rise to No. 3 in the Texas Girls Coaches Association statewide softball rankings.

But while many have rightly credited Washington and her ability to consistently shut down opposing lineups, the pitcher herself shifts a surprising amount of the credit for that ability to another, less heralded player — her battery mate, Hannah Lopez.

The relationship between a pitcher and catcher is one of the most unique in all of sports, and both Washington and Lopez attribute the success they’ve shared — both individually and as part of a successful team — to the trust they’ve built the last two years.

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LOCAL HOOPS ROUNDUP: Lady Eagles top Trinity in 3-6A opener

The Abilene High girls basketball team opened District 3-6A play on a winning note Tuesday, outlasting Euless Trinity for a 40-38 win at Eagle Gym.

Trailing 13-8 after a quarter, the Lady Eagles rallied to tie the game at 20-all by halftime. And with the game still tied heading into the fourth period, AHS outscored the Lady Trojans 10-8 over the final eight minutes to escape with the two-point win.

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Talley’s late 3-pointer lifts Abilene High over Wylie

Abilene High senior Landon Talley was relatively quiet for most the Eagles’ game Tuesday at Wylie. But his go-head 3-pointer with 32.9 seconds remaining proved to be the difference in a thrilling 52-49 win over the Bulldogs on their home floor.

Talley’s shot, just his second field goal of the game, capped the second of two two-possession rallies for AHS, which sealed the victory on the defensive end and at the free-throw line.

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LOCAL HOOPS ROUNDUP: Montes shoots AHS girls past Odessa High in OT thriller

Georgia Montes hit eight 3-pointers Tuesday, and the Abilene High Lady Eagles needed every one of them to escape Eagle Gym with a 57-56 overtime win over Odessa High.

Montes finished with a game-high 24 points to pace AHS, which outscored the Lady Bronchos 8-7 over the extra period to improve to 8-8 on the season.

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LOCAL HOOPS ROUNDUP: Coogs top Estacado; AHS, Cooper girls fall to area foes

LUBBOCK — The Cooper boys basketball team continued its strong start to the season Tuesday, rallying from seven points down at halftime to knock off Lubbock Estacado 70-65.

The Cougars took the lead with a 27-17 third-quarter run and held off the Matadors in the fourth to improve to 4-1 on the year.

Deven Bailey once again led the Coogs, scoring a team-high 21 points for the second straight game, while Ben Thompson added 13, Josh Henry and Noah Garcia both scored nine, and Kaden Davis pitched in eight.

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Abilene High boys dominate Mineral Wells 61-31

The Abilene High boys basketball team outscored Mineral Wells 17-1 in the second quarter Tuesday to stretch a six-point lead to 22 points by halftime in routing the Rams 61-31 in a nondistrict matchup at Eagle Gym.

Post Devyan Wilkins came off the bench to score 14 points to lead AHS, which held Mineral Wells to single-digit point totals in every quarter but the fourth.

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LOCAL HOOPS ROUNDUP: Abilene High, Wylie boys fall on road

WOLFFORTH — The Abilene High boys basketball team led Wolfforth Frenship 16-13 after a quarter Monday, but the Eagles were outscored by 26 points the rest of the way in a 74-51 loss.

AHS, which trailed 33-29 at halftime, saw a 22-10 third-quarter disadvantage sink its efforts in falling to 2-2 on the season.

Landon Talley led the Eagles with 12 points, followed by Jalen McGee and Brian Patton with nine points apiece.

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AHS boys blast Odessa High on coach’s birthday (w/ video interview of senior Brian Patton)

The Abilene High boys basketball team gave first-year coach Justin Reese the best present they could on Tuesday night at Eagle Gym, celebrating his 41st birthday with a 65-42 win over Odessa High in the Eagles’ first game of the season on the court that Reese called home as a player in the 1990s.

AHS never trailed, racing out to a 15-6 first-quarter lead and controlling the game from there in improving to 1-1 on the young season.

“It’s the best birthday present,” said Reese of the win — his first at his alma mater after spending the past nine years as the head boys basketball coach at Richardson.

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District 3-6A: Week 11 Report

Abilene High (idle) — With their bye week scheduled for Week 11, the Eagles (5-5, 2-4) could do nothing but watch as their playoff hopes were officially dashed with a 28-15 Weatherford win over Hurst Bell.

Abilene High, which closed its season with four consecutive losses, would have made the playoffs as 3-6A’s fourth-place team if the Blue Raiders had knocked off the Kangaroos on Friday, but it couldn’t get the help it needed to extend its season.

AHS, which won five straight games from Week 2 to Week 6, had that streak snapped by a 17-15 loss to San Angelo Central that saw the Bobcats force a late fumble inside their own 5-yard line and drive for a game-winning field goal as time expired. That game was followed by consecutive losses to Haltom City Haltom (28-14), Weatherford (42-23) and Euless Trinity (34-16).

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Local boys basketball teams young but talented in 2018-19

Graduation did a number on Abilene’s three boys basketball teams, which return just four starters and 15 lettermen among them for the 2018-19 season. But if you think that’s changed the expectations on the Abilene High, Cooper and Wylie campuses, you would be wrong.

With AHS grad Justin Reese taking over the Eagle program from Don Heseman, who left after five seasons to become assistant principal at AISD’s Woodson Center for Excellence, a playoff return is the goal on Abilene’s north side. And with their program’s established on the other side of the tracks, Cooper’s Bryan Conover and Wylie’s Gregg Ruffin are shooting for the Class 5A postseason.

While all three coaches are expecting some growing pains early as their young teams jell, each feels good about his roster and the ability of the players on it to compete.

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District 3-6A: Week 10 Report

Euless Trinity 34, Abilene High 16 — The Trojans’ defense and running game proved too much for the Eagles to handle Friday at Pennington Field, where Trinity outgained AHS 406-153, including a 281-65 advantage on the ground.

Running back Brandon Theus was especially potent, rushing for 184 yards and three touchdowns on just 12 carries for the Trojans (7-1, 4-1). Despite this, the Eagles (5-5, 2-4) only trailed 21-9 at halftime and 27-16 heading into the final quarter.

While AHS missed a chance to clinch a playoff spot with an upset, the Eagles remain in the playoff picture thanks to North Richland Hills Richland’s 36-33 win over Weatherford on Friday. If Hurst Bell can knock off Weatherford this week and Trinity can take care of Richland, the Eagles, who are idle in Week 11, will make the playoffs as the district’s fourth seed.

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Trinity drops Abilene High 34-16, leaves Eagles in playoff limbo

BEDFORD — Abilene High lost its district finale to Trinity to close out the regular season at 5-5, but the news wasn’t all bad for the Eagles  on Friday.

Waiting on the field after their 34-16 loss to the Trojans, the AHS coaches and players learned that North Richland Hills Richland had held off Weatherford 36-33, keeping the Eagles’ narrow playoff hopes alive entering their Week 11 bye week.

AHS, which wrapped up District 3-6A play at 2-4, now needs Weatherford to lose to Hurst Bell and Richland to lose to Trinity next week lock up the district’s fourth playoff spot.

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Eagles head east for regular-season finale at Trinity

ABILENE HIGH (5-4, 2-3) AT EULESS TRINITY (6-1, 3-1)

7 p.m. Friday at Pennington Field, Bedford

What it means: The Eagles can’t clinch a playoff berth with a win and they’re not technically eliminated with a loss, but their path to the postseason gets much easier if they can find a way to pull off the upset. AHS, which is idle in Week 11, would only need Weatherford to lose one of its remaining games against Hurst Bell and North Richland Hills Richland to get in with a victory. With a loss, the Eagles would need Weatherford to lose both of its remaining games and for Richland to drop its regular-season finale to Trinity. 

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Local girls basketball teams aim to compete despite transition in 2018-19

The 2018-19 high school basketball season will be one of great change for Abilene’s three girls teams.

Wylie will play for a new coach in a new classification this winter, while both Abilene High and Cooper must replace a number of key players off teams that took significant steps forward a year ago.

Amid all the transition for the Lady Bulldogs, Lady Eagles and Lady Cougars, however, expectations remain unchanged on Abilene’s three local campuses, where first-year Wylie coach Amy Powell, sixth-year Abilene High coach Terri Aston and third-year Cooper coach Lauren Ash all have high hopes for their squads.

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Eagles enter regular-season finale at Trinity on a mission

Entering their regular-season finale at Euless Trinity on Friday, the Abilene High football team’s path to the postseason is a murky one.

Consecutive losses to San Angelo Central, Haltom City Haltom and Weatherford have the Eagles needing some help from their district mates to extend their season to Week 12, as no outcome this week at Pennington Field will — on its own — ensure that AHS (5-4 overall, 2-3 District 3-6A) will make or miss the playoffs. 

With so much beyond their control, Coach Del Van Cox and his Eagles are focusing on the one thing they can influence: their own play. And they’re treating Friday’s matchup against the Trojans with all the must-win urgency of a playoff game.

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District 3-6A: Week 9 Report

Weatherford 42, Abilene High 23 — The Kangaroos (3-5, 1-3) scored 35 consecutive points to turn a 14-7 second-quarter deficit into a comfortable road win Friday at Shotwell Stadium. 

Quarterback Ken seals hit 16 of 28 passes for 349 yards and four touchdowns to lead Weatherford, which outgained the Eagles 478-172 in the victory. AHS (5-4, 2-3) had just 41 yards on the ground, putting extra pressure on sophomore quarterback Matthew Ezzell, who was making his first career start in relief of injured senior Kallin Sipe.

The loss, the Eagles’ third in a row, forces coach Del Van Cox’s squad into a must-win situation this week at Trinity. AHS is still fourth in the District 3-6A standings, but Weatherford now holds the tiebreaker over the Eagles with games remaining against North Richland Hills Richland (3-5, 1-3) and Hurst Bell (1-7, 0-4).

NOTE — Photos may be purchased for $7 each by pushing the small shopping cart emblem below the lower-right corner of the gallery.

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Weatherford hands AHS costly loss in Eagles’ final home game

Missed opportunities, struggles in the running game and an inability to slow Weatherford’s passing attack all cost the Abilene High football team dearly Friday in a 42-23 loss to the Kangaroos on Parent Night at Shotwell Stadium.

The Eagles, who failed on several occasions in the first half to capitalize on excellent field position, finished with just 41 yards rushing while surrendering 349 yards through the air, allowing Weatherford to score 35 consecutive points over the final three quarters and turn a game that was tied at halftime into a rout.

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Abilene High welcomes Weatherford for big district game

WEATHERFORD (2-5, 0-3) AT ABILENE HIGH (5-3, 2-2)

7:30 p.m. Friday at Shotwell Stadium, Abilene

What it means: After dropping their last two District 3-6A games to San Angelo Central (17-15) and Haltom City Haltom (28-14), the Eagles need a win Friday to solidify their hold on the league’s fourth playoff spot. AHS will have a chance to improve its standing regardless next week at Euless Trinity, but coach Del Van Cox’s team doesn’t want to go into that game needing a win to lock up a postseason berth. This is the 11th meeting between the Eagles and Kangaroos. AHS has won all 10 previous meetings, including last year’s game by a 30-7 margin.

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Abilene High RB trio sharing load, providing production for Eagles

Looking solely at the Abilene High stat sheet, it would be difficult to identify the Eagles’ featured running back. That’s largely because that title — and the player who holds it — can vary from drive to drive.

With injuries and position changes impacting that spot this season, the AHS coaching staff has taken more of a committee approach to the running game. But the trio of Xavier Carrillo (76-397), Phonzo Dotson (59-395, 4 TDs) and Esai Jaques (64-215) have combined to provide the offense with steady and needed production.

With everyone healthy and more comfortable with their roles within the offense, the members of that committee are excited about what the final two weeks of the regular season holds and eager to bring a new level of consistency to their play as the playoffs approach.

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District 3-6A: Week 8 Report

Haltom City Haltom 28, Abilene High 14 — The Eagles (5-3, 2-2) held the Buffalos to their season-low scoring output, including just seven points in the second half, but it wasn’t enough to hand Haltom its first loss of the season.

The Buffs (7-0, 3-0) raced out to a 21-0 halftime lead, extended it to 28 points with a third-quarter touchdown and held off a late AHS rally to stay alone atop the 3-6A standings.

The Eagles allowed 445 yards, with 195 of those coming on Haltom’s four scoring plays. The back-breaker came on the Buffs’ final touchdown, an 84-yard pass from Michael Black to Julian Johnson after Black had retrieved an errant shotgun snap.

Leading the way for AHS, which was limited to 260 yards, was backup quarterback Matthew Ezzell (7-12-1—103, 1 TD), running back Xavier Carrillo (25-95 rushing) and receiver Reese Pettijohn (7-84 receiving).

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Fast start, big plays spark Haltom past Abilene High 28-14

NORTH RICHLAND HILLS — Haltom’s quick-strike offense accounted for three big-play touchdowns, and that was enough to propel the unbeaten Buffalos to a 28-14 win over Abilene in a District 3-6A game Friday night that probably left the Eagles wondering, “What if …?” afterward.

Though the Buffs improved to 7-0 on the season and 3-0 in league play, Abilene High’s defense often put the clamps on a team that was averaging more than 50 points per game — and that had taken down perennial district kingpin Trinity 48-34 a week earlier.

It couldn’t stymie Haltom’s talented quarterback Michael Black three times, however, and that was pretty much the difference in a hard-hitting game. Black ran for a 51-yard score and threw a 51-yard touchdown bomb to Decorian Mitchell. At that, it was his third scoring play that showed why the Buffalos are so dangerous.

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Eagles head to Haltom City for matchup with unbeaten Buffs

ABILENE HIGH (5-2, 2-1) AT HALTOM CITY HALTOM (6-0, 2-0)

7:30 p.m. Friday at Birdville Fine Arts/Athletics Complex, North Richland Hills

What it means: A win by Haltom would keep the Buffalos alone atop the District 3-6A standings as the league’s only undefeated team, while an AHS victory would put the Eagles in a tie with as many as three other teams for the district’s top spot. This matchup, the fifth between these schools, features 3-6A’s best offense (Haltom, 51.3 points per game) and best defense (AHS, 16.4 points allowed per game). The Eagles hold a 3-1 edge in this series, with the lone loss coming last year in a 36-35 thriller at Shotwell Stadium.

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Stout Abilene High defense looks to slow stampeding Buffalos

While Abilene High’s last-second loss to San Angelo Central may have kept this week’s game against Haltom City Haltom from being a clash of District 3-6A unbeatens, it did little to steal the intrigue from what remains one of the region’s top Class 6A matchups for Week 8.

The game, which pits 3-6A’s top offensive team against the district’s top defense, still has massive implications on the league’s playoff and championship races.

Add some history to the mix — Haltom came from behind to beat AHS 36-35 last year, effectively taking the district’s fourth playoff spot from the Eagles in the process — and you’ve got enough storylines to get even the most casual of fans excited for this one.

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District 3-6A: Week 7 Report

San Angelo Central 17, Abilene High 15 — The Eagles (4-2, 2-1) dropped an absolute heartbreaker to the Bobcats, who got a 37-yard field goal as time expired to escape Shotwell Stadium with the win.

AHS had a chance to put the game away before the game-winning drive, pushing the ball inside the Central 10-yard line with a 15-14 lead and a little over two minutes remaining, but a fumble inside the 5 gave the Bobcats (4-2, 2-1) one final chance. They responded by driving 78 yards to set up Miles Houser’s field goal.

The Central offense scored just 10 offensive points, but a fumble return touchdown allowed the ‘Cats to take a 14-9 lead into halftime. Quarterback Kallin Sipe passed for 124 yards and Xavier Carrillo ran for 111 for Abilene High, which was narrowly outgained 326-324.

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Last-second FG lifts Central over Abilene High 17-15

The Abilene High players and coaches will likely be replaying the final 2½ minutes of Friday’s 17-15 loss to San Angelo Central in their heads for quite some time.

If one of any number of things during that sequence had gone just a little bit differently, the Eagles would have been talking about their sixth consecutive victory and gearing up for a battle of District 3-6A unbeatens with Haltom City Haltom next week.

Instead, a perfect storm of events forced the home team to watch a jubilant Bobcats squad celebrate a last-second win on the on the Shotwell Stadium turf.

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Abilene High hosts Central in search of sixth straight win

SAN ANGELO CENTRAL (4-2, 1-1) AT ABILENE HIGH (5-1, 2-0)

7:30 p.m. Friday at Shotwell Stadium, Abilene

What it means: The Eagles can be one of just two unbeaten teams in District 3-6A play after Friday with a victory over the Bobcats. The league’s only other undefeated teams, Euless Trinity (5-0, 2-0) and Haltom City Haltom (5-0, 1-0), meet Friday in Bedford, so one is guaranteed its first loss. AHS still has both of those teams on its schedule, playing Haltom on the road next week and hosting Trinity in Week 10. A victory here would put district championship implications on those two games. This is the 99th meeting between AHS and Central. It’s been a hyper competitive series to date, with the Eagles holding a narrow 48-44-6 advantage. The Bobcats have won four of the last five meetings, however, since snapping a 10-game AHS win streak in 2013.

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AHS cornerback Simpson happy out on his island

Abilene High senior Tyler Simpson is a confident kid. He has to be to play cornerback at the Class 6A level.

Manning a position that puts him on an island with some of the most talented receivers in the state, he knows that the slightest hesitation or indecision can have the opposing band striking up the fight song within seconds.

If that sounds like a high-stress job, it is. But the one-on-one, do-or-die nature of his position only adds to the thrill of playing it.

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District 3-6A: Week 6 Report

Abilene High 28, Hurst Bell 7 — Playing for coach Del Van Cox, who lost his father to an inoperable brain tumor just days before Friday’s game, the Eagles did what they needed to do to secure an emotional road win Friday in Bedford.

Trailing 7-0 late in the first quarter, AHS (5-1, 2-0) tied the game on a 49-yard pass from Kallin Sipe to Clay Cox, Del Van’s son. And the Eagles took the lead for good midway through the second, when Griffin Cooke blocked a field goal attempt and Tyler Simpson took it back 72 yards to the house.

The Eagles ran just 30 offensive plays in the victory, gaining 244 total yards, but they limited the Blue Raiders (1-5, 0-2) to 212 total yards. Sipe finished 3-of-5 passing for 144 yards and two touchdowns, with two of those throws going to Marcos Garcia for 95 yards, including a 77-yard bomb in the third quarter.

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Abilene High earns emotional win at Hurst Bell

BEDFORD — Sparked by big plays by the offense, defense and special teams, the Abilene High Eagles earned an emotional 28-7 win over the Hurst Bell Blue Raiders in a District 3-6A game Friday night at Pennington Field.

Just days after the passing of Coach Del Van Cox’s father, Nowlin “Corky” Cox, the Eagles struck quickly on a bomb and a blocked a field goal — and intercepted a pass at a key juncture in the game — to improve their record to 5-1 overall and 2-0 in district. Bell fell to 1-5 and 0-2.

Afterward, during Cox’s postgame speech to the squad, dozens of Eagles shouted, “We love you, Coach!” and then proceeded to give him a group hug after he congratulated them on their effort against the Raiders.

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Abilene High heads east to take on Hurst Bell

ABILENE HIGH (4-1, 1-0) AT HURST BELL (1-4, 0-1)

7:30 p.m. Friday at Pennington Field, Bedford

What it means: The Eagles can improve to 2-0 in District 3-6A play with a win, which would be big heading into key games against San Angelo Central (4-1, 1-0) and Haltom City Haltom (4-0, 0-0) the next two weeks. A victory also would keep AHS perfect against the Blue Raiders, who the Eagles beat 38-12 in 2014 and 44-12 in 2015, the only two previous meetings in the series. 

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Abilene High O-line answering coach’s call for more physicality

Abilene High coach Del Van Cox has been challenging his offensive line all year to be more physical.

The past two weeks, that group has responded.

Since averaging just 94.7 rushing yards per game and 2.5 yards per carry through the first three weeks of the season, the Eagles have rushed for 647 yards 6.2 yards per attempt in their last two games. While the team’s backs have gotten well-deserved attention for their increased production, the heart of that change is an O-line group that accepted their coach’s challenge and vowed to do something about it.

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District 3-6A: Week 5 Report

Abilene High 48, North Richland Hills Richland 41 — Sophomore running back Phonzo Dotson rushed for 246 yards and touchdowns of 54 and 92 yards Friday to lead the Eagles to a thrilling win over the Rebels in the District 3-6A opener for both teams.

AHS (4-1 overall, 1-0 district) trailed 41-38 entering the final quarter, but kicker Ray Mouloungui tied the game with 6:41 remaining and Dotson won it with a 92-yard scoring run with 2:36 to play.

In addition to Dotson’s heroics, quarterback Kallin Sipe hit 14 of 23 passes for 207 yards and four TDs, and receiver Reese Pettijohn caught five passes for 91 yards and two scores.

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Eagles rally for thrilling win over Richland (w/ photo gallery)

After watching the defense shut down Cooper and Midland High the past two weeks, the Abilene High offense knew it needed to pick up the slack Friday night in the Eagles’ District 3-6A opener at Shotwell Stadium against North Richland Hills Richland.

Boy, did the offense do its job.

Abilene High put up 565 total yards in a back-and-forth affair before putting together a fourth-quarter rally for a 48-41 win.

Kallin Sipe threw for 207 yards and four touchdowns, but it was the Eagles’ ground game that dominated. Abilene High ran 51 times for 358 yards in the win.

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Abilene High hosts Richland for 3-6A opener

N.R.H. RICHLAND (2-2, 0-0) AT ABILENE HIGH (3-1, 0-0)

7:30 p.m. Friday at Shotwell Stadium, Abilene

What it means: It’s the first district game for both teams and could be an important one in the District 3-6A playoff race. This league is five deep with quality teams this year, and only four can advance to the postseason. That puts added importance on every district game and adds pressure with every loss. AHS enters this matchup on a three-game winning streak and is 2-0 on its home field. Richland, meanwhile, enters this game off a 38-8 drubbing by Arlington Lamar. These teams have only met three times previously, the last in 2009. The Eagles, who hold a narrow 2-1 lead in the series, downed the Rebels 48-28 in 2008 and 45-14 in 2009, both of which were district matchups.

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Abilene High defense dominant in homecoming shutout

The Abilene High defense continued its dominating start to the season Friday, limiting an explosive Midland High offense to 172 total yards and seven first downs in a 13-0 homecoming win at Shotwell Stadium.

Playing in heavy wind and a steady rain that kept both teams’ offenses grounded, the Eagles allowed just 25 yards in the second half in winning their third consecutive game.

Midland High, which came in averaging 34.7 points per contest, went three and out on eight of its 12 possessions, including all but its last of the second half. And on the two occasions the Bulldogs pushed into AHS territory, the Eagles defense came up with big plays, forcing and recovering a fumble inside the 10 midway through the first quarter and stopping MHS on downs at the 30 early in the second.

Those missed opportunities proved costly for the Bulldogs against an AHS defensive unit that allowed just one first down over the final two quarters in lowering its points-against average to 12.5 per game.

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District 3-6A: Week 3 Report

Abilene High 20, Cooper 13 — The Eagles rallied from a 13-3 halftime deficit to win their second straight game and regain bragging rights over their crosstown rival.

Quarterback Kallin Sipe went 12 of 24 for 253 yards and two touchdowns, hitting Clay Cox five times for 131 yards and Reese Pettijohn three times for 80 yards and a TD.

The AHS defense was impressive once again, limiting the Cougars to 259 total yards, just 90 of those during a second-half shutout.

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Abilene High rallies past Cooper 20-13 (w/ photo gallery)

For the second consecutive week, the Abilene High football team needed to rally in the second half for a victory. This time, it was against crosstown rival Cooper.

Trailing 13-3 at halftime, the Eagles outscored the Cougars 17-0 over the final two quarters, taking their first lead of the game late in the third quarter and holding on in the fourth for a 20-13 win Friday at Shotwell Stadium.

“We knew exactly what we would get from them,” Abilene High coach Del Van Cox said. “In this game, you can throw out records, you can throw out who’s hurt and who’s not hurt. You saw how hard both teams played, especially them in the first half and then our kids responded and played very well in the second half.

“But you can throw all records out, as you can tell. It’s going to be a battle any time you play the Cooper Cougars.”