Cover Photo via the Dallas Morning News/ Smiley N. Pool
Just like the student athletes we love to watch every Friday night; we’re learning more and more every day. Sure, we may not be learning about algebra and physics, but we are learning more and more about how district races might play out and which teams are for real this season. The semesters toughest test has come and gone for some teams while others have titanic district matchups ahead. The entire Inside High School Sports team would also like to congratulate Matthew Stafford and his family on his jersey retirement at Highland Park! Now, let’s recap week three and look ahead to the week four schedule.
North Crowley beats Lovejoy
North Crowley beating Lovejoy certainly raised some eyebrows. This game was the moment a lot of people around the metroplex found out that North Crowley might be for real this season. But it wasn’t just that North Crowley won this game, it was how the game was won. The Panthers out-gained Lovejoy by more than 200 yards, forced two turnovers and held Lovejoy’s talented receiving corps in check all night long.
Chris Jimerson passed for 156 yards and a touchdown on 10-of-18 passing. His favorite target was Ka’Morreun Pimpton, who caught five passes for 97 yards and a score. Cornelius Warren carried the ball 17 times for 182 yards and two touchdowns while Dejuan Lacy added 72 yards and a score on the ground. Pimpton and Warren were the stars of the night on offense for North Crowley.
Lovejoy is used to putting up a lot of points, but the North Crowley defense held the Leopards in check all night long. Brayden Hagle completed 14 of his 25 passes for 138 yards and a touchdown. Matthew Mainord led Lovejoy in rushing with 52 yards on 12 carries and Kyle Parker scored a touchdown on the ground from a yard out. Parker also caught the lone touchdown pass of the night. Jaxson Lavendar caught three passes for 40 yards and Parker Livngstone caught three passes for 37 yards.
North Crowley will look to carry the momentum into district play where it will try to conquer Trinity and win a district title. The Panthers open district play with Paschal next week before the big showdown against the Trojans in Euless on September 23.
Flower Mound Marcus defeats Trinity
Both of these teams played tough non-district schedules and one of these teams had to end up at 0-3 after both dropped games in the first two weeks of the season. Trinity ended up being the team to fall to 0-3 while Flower Mound Marcus gets out of non-district play with a 1-2 record. Trinity out-gained Marcus by nearly 200 yards in the loss.
Marcus quarterback Cole Welliver completed 19 of his 30 passes for 225 yards and a touchdown in the win. Ashton Cozart was the leading receiver with five receptions for 65 yards and a score. Welliver spread the love around, completing passes to eight different receivers. Ben Perlmutter rushed for 21 yards and a touchdown to lead Marcus in rushing. The Marauders got three field goals from Michael Petro to help secure the win.
Trinity got it done on the ground once again, though there has been a noticeable attempt to pass the ball this season. Ethan Williams completed six of his 10 passing attempts for 107 yards and TJ Tupou completed nine of his 20 passing attempts for 104 yards. Nasir Allah was the go-to receiver, catching nine passes for 107 yards. Jarvis Heimuli added four receptions for 61 yards. Gary Maddox racked up 106 yards and two scores on 29 carries. Williams added 53 yards and a touchdown on the ground.
Trinity will look to pick up its first win of the season against Saginaw Boswell in its district opener this weekend before a tough test against North Crowley at home the following week. Flower Mound Marcus opens district play with a road trip to Hebron.
Allen takes down Arlington Martin
Arlington Martin is more on Allen’s level than St. John Bosco and C.E. King were. There is much more we can glean from this game for both teams. It was encouraging to see the Eagles win a game against a team closer to their level, but Arlington Martin shouldn’t be discouraged. It’s week three and the Warriors were a few plays away from the result of this game being different. Arlington Martin always improves as the season goes on, so watch out for the Warriors in November.
Allen quarterback Mike Hawkins Jr. passed for 87 yards and a touchdown for the Eagles. Messiah Washington caught the touchdown pass and Davon Mitchell led Allen in receiving with two receptions for 54 yards. Kayvion Sibley was featured early and often in this game, carrying the football 30 times for 146 yards and a touchdown. Michael Crowder also scored a touchdown on the ground.
Arlington Martin quarterback Tristan Bittle passed for 88 yards and a score in the loss. Gage Wager also threw a short touchdown pass for the Warriors. Jeremiah Charles caught a 62-yard touchdown pass for his lone reception of the night to lead the Arlington Martin receivers. Sergio Snider Jr. also caught a short touchdown pass. Michael Barrow didn’t score but did help move the ball, carrying the ball 20 times for 106 yards.
Both teams should get a lot out of this game. Allen needed the test before getting into a tough district schedule. Arlington Martin now knows where it stands in relation to a team it may need to beat later this year in the playoffs. I certainly wouldn’t complain if we were treated to a rematch in the playoffs.
Games to Watch
Rockwall (2-1) @ South Grand Prairie (0-3)
South Grand Prairie has lost all three of its games this season. Two of those losses have come by four points and the other loss was by five points. It doesn’t get any easier for the Warriors this week against Rockwall. The Yellow Jackets are 2-1 and coming off a weird 19-11 loss to Prosper. The Rockwall offense will want to get back on track in this game and South Grand Prairie would love a win to gain momentum before opening district play with Arlington Martin.
Byron Nelson (3-0) @ Keller Fossil Ridge (2-1)
Keller Fossil Ridge has its work cut out for it on Thursday night. The Panthers are off to a good start this season with just one loss. That loss came to Denton Braswell 48-21. Byron Nelson just beat the same Denton Braswell team 79-20. The Keller Fossil Ridge offense is going to need to have its best performance to keep up with Byron Nelson’s high-powered offense.
Prosper (3-0) @ Denton Guyer (3-0)
Prosper heads into district play undefeated after a 19-11 win over Rockwall. Denton Guyer is also undefeated and has looked the part of a title contender so far. This will not be an easy game for Prosper to win. Taking care of the football against a talented Denton Guyer secondary will be key for QB Harrison Rosar and the Prosper offense. The defense will get the unenviable task of slowing down QB Jackson Arnold and a lethal Guyer offense. That being said, the Prosper defense has been lights out thus far this season.
South Oak Cliff (0-3) vs Parish Episcopal (3-0)
It’s well documented that South Oak Cliff is playing the toughest non-district schedule in the state. The Golden Bears won’t use that as an excuse to still be looking for their first win well into September though. Parish Episcopal has a pair of impressive wins against Aledo and Austin LBJ. South Oak Cliff will likely eventually need to get through Aledo to reach another state championship game, so beating Parish Episcopal and picking up its first win of the season would feel really nice in Oak Cliff, Texas, this weekend.
Cedar Hill (0-3) @ Waxahachie (3-0)
Cedar Hill isn’t usually in a place where a spot in the playoffs is in doubt, especially this early in the season. The Longhorns play in one of the most competitive districts in the state and could use a win against Waxahachie to inspire confidence to make the playoffs. Cedar Hill is 0-3 and hasn’t scored more than 12 points in a game so far this season, though it did play a tough non-district schedule. Waxahachie is 3-0 and has won three blowouts, though the Indians schedule wasn’t anywhere near as difficult as Cedar Hill’s was. These two teams will be competing for the last two playoff spots in District 11-6A, so this game is crucial to both teams.
McKinney North (3-0) @ Lancaster (2-1)
McKinney North scored points by the wheel barrel in non-district play. Lancaster picked up one of the better non-district wins in the metroplex over South Oak Cliff and closed out district play with a “good loss” to Denton Guyer 50-27. District 7-5A DI should be pretty competitive and McKinney North and Lancaster will be right in the mix. The winner of this game will gain momentum heading into the remaining district schedule.
Keller (3-0) @ Eaton (1-2)
Don’t let the records fool you, this should be one of the most evenly matched games on Friday night. Keller went west twice and beat Plano West at home in non-district. Eaton picked up a win against Little Elm with losses against Denton Braswell and Hebron. Southlake Carroll and Byron Nelson look to be the class of District 4-6A. Keller and Eaton will challenge for the last two playoff spots and Friday night’s winner will have a leg up on the loser.
Offensive Player of the Week
My Offensive Player of the Week is Byron Nelson quarterback Jake Wilson! Byron Nelson broke a school record for points in a game in a 79-20 win over Denton Braswell. Wilson completed 29 of his 33 passes for 486 yards and four touchdowns in the win! It’s impressive any time a school record is broken, and Wilson is a big reason why the old Bobcats record book had to be dusted off and edited on Monday morning.
Defensive Player of the Week
My Defensive Player of the Week is Hebron linebacker Carson Dean! Hebron’s 64-50 win over Eaton wasn’t exactly a defensive slugfest, but Dean’s big night helped Hebron secure a win. Dean finished with two interceptions, eight tackles and three tackles-for-loss in the win! That performance helped Hebron improve to 2-1 on the season before getting into district play against Flower Mound Marcus this weekend.
Cover Photo of Matthew Stafford at his jersey retirement ceremony courtesy of the Dallas Morning News and Staff Photographer Smiley N. Pool.