The Cooldown- 2020 Week Nine
It’s the last week of October and we’re still playing football in Texas! The small schools have just two weeks left in the regular season and are gearing up for the playoffs. The big schools just kicked off district play. We’re in a weird part of the 2020 schedule where the consequence of games is much larger for small schools than it is for big schools. Let’s recap last weekend’s games and look ahead to this weekend’s slate.
Colleyville Heritage outlasts Richland in Overtime
This was one of the best games in the area last weekend. Colleyville Heritage outlasted Richland 48-42 in overtime after a Braxton Ash game-winning touchdown run in the extra period. Richland led Colleyville Heritage by as many as 14 points in the 4th quarter. AJ Smith-Shawver connected with Mason Murdock to cut the lead to seven and then Ash scored to tie the game a few minutes later. Richland was unable to convert a field goal opportunity in the overtime period before Ash’s game-winning score.
Richland receiver CJ Nelson finished with 12 receptions for 288 yards and five touchdowns. Nelson torched the Panthers secondary all night and no other Richland receiver had more than six receiving yards. Nelson also recorded two interceptions in the loss. Colleyville Heritage quarterback Smith-Shawver finished with 297 yards and three touchdowns and Hogan Wasson finished with 158 total yards and a score. Ash added 108 yards and three scores on the ground.
McKinney Boyd takes down Denton Braswell
Denton Braswell was my pick to take the fourth playoff spot in a tough district. Those hopes might be gone after the Bengals dropped their district opener to McKinney Boyd. The Braswell offense struggled to get anything going against a stingy Boyd defense in the 42-12 loss. Quarterback Tristan McClary finished with 191 yards passing and another 49 yards and a score on the ground.
McKinney Boyd’s playoff hopes are looking good after the big win. Ryan Shackleton completed 15 of his 19 passes for 248 yards and three scores. Peyton Shaw rushed for 110 yards and two scores and Jay Thompson added 93 yards on the ground. Carter Whitefield finished with 162 receiving yards and four total touchdowns. This was a big win for Boyd over a team that will be competing for the last playoff spot in a district with Allen, Denton Guyer and Prosper.
Player of the Week
My player of the week is Colleyville Heritage running back Braxton Ash. It was really hard not to go with Richland receiver CJ Nelson here, but Heritage won the game thanks to Ash, who scored the last two touchdowns of the game to give the Panthers a 1-0 district record.
Team of the Week
My team of the week is the Rockwall Yellow Jackets. It’s been a rollercoaster ride for Rockwall over the last few weeks. A three game homestand got off to a rocky start when Rockwall fell behind Southlake Carroll in the first half. The Yellow Jackets came back to win that game in epic fashion 44-42 over the Dragons. Rockwall dropped a game against Highland Park the next week and only mustered 18 points in the loss. All of that led up to a high-powered matchup with Rockwall-Heath. Rockwall took down the Hawks 38-27 after trailing to start the fourth quarter, making the Yellow Jackets my team of the week.
Games to Watch
Thursday, October 29
Sachse @ Rowlett
Rowlett started its season on the right foot with a 45-14 win over North Garland. They’ll take on a 2-1 Sachse squad that also boasts a big win over North Garland. This will be a tough test for a Rowlett team that has only played one game. Sachse should win this game, but I am interested in seeing how Rowlett handles one of the best teams in its district.
Frisco Reedy @ Frisco Lone Star
Frisco Lone Star started its season with an 0-2 record, losing the two games by a combined five point. The Lone Star offense exploded for 73 points in a big win over Frisco Heritage. The Rangers game against Frisco Independence was canceled and Lone Star had a bye last weekend, but I expect the offense to come out firing on all cylinders against Reedy this weekend. Reedy is 3-1 with the loss coming in a shutout against Frisco. Reedy’s game against Denton Ryan was canceled and the Eagles are coming off a big win over Independence. I like Lone Star in this one, but I’ll be keeping my eyes on Reedy.
Friday, October 30
Flower Mound @ Hebron
I will have my eyes on this game as well as these appear to be two evenly matched teams that will be competing for a playoff spot. Flower Mound lost its district opener but also got the best team in its district out of the way after a 55-14 loss to Flower Mound Marcus. Hebron won its first district game against Plano East. The winner of this game will be in much better position to snag a playoff spot.
Frisco @ Frisco Liberty
Frisco Liberty is 4-1 and 2-0 in district play and has a dynamic offense behind quarterback Kendric Luster and wide out Evan Stewart. Frisco is 4-0 and 2-0 in district play and has the more experienced group. This could be a great game, but I have Frisco in this one. I think the lights will shine a little too bright for Liberty, but the Red Hawks should make the playoffs this season after winning just one game over the last two years.
Denton Guyer @ Prosper
Denton Guyer got involved in a shootout against McKinney last weekend. The game was tied at 21 after the first quarter before Guyer pulled away for a 55-35 win. I could see this game being similar. I like Prosper but Denton Guyer is the more talented team and should win this one by a few scores, but don’t be surprised if Prosper sticks around in this one.
Plano East @ Lewisville
The Fighting Farmers of Lewisville dropped their opening district game to Plano West 27-17. The upset win for Plano West goes a long way towards the Wolves getting into the playoffs, but Plano West has a long way to go. I expected Lewisville to finish second in this district, but they are now 0-1 in district play. If Lewisville is going to bounce back, it starts this weekend against a Plano East team that dropped its district opener to Hebron. Lewisville’s playoff hopes will be on life support if it loses to Plano East this weekend.