by Kirk Dooley
It’s right about now that we should be glad the Scots lost to Wylie East in the final district game.
Not that we’re pleased with a loss (especially the first loss in HP history to a Wylie team) but it did expose some HP weaknesses and it propelled the Scots into the playoffs with that bitter taste of defeat in their mouths. The players left their Superman capes in the phone booth and came out with a blue-collar resolve to prove to the world that they had what it takes to be champions.
And win they did. In the first three playoff games they have averaged 52 points per game and kept the bad guys out of the end zone the first 10 quarters of the playoffs. These Scots have matured, come together, overcome injuries and have the zeal to leave a football legacy like previous generations of Scots before them.
And now Mansfield Legacy walks into their crosshairs. This is the best Mansfield team, not that the other two HP beat this season were slouches. The only two losses Legacy has suffered have been to Aledo and Lancaster, both of which are playing this weekend in the state quarterfinals.
Like Poteet, Legacy has sprinter speed. Randy Allen says that this is the fastest team the Scots have faced this season. They have a 2,000-yard running back (Cameron Session), A wide receiver (Trenton McDonald) who runs back kickoffs for touchdowns as often as Southwest flies to Houston, a sophomore free safety (Jalen Catalon) who has 140 tackles and seven interceptions and a quarterback (Kendall Catalon) who has thrown for 1,581 yards and run for 1,036, accounting for 47 touchdowns.
Kendall Catalon injured his shoulder last Friday and didn’t play in the second half. Will he and his 47 touchdowns play this Friday against the Scots? Coach Allen says he probably will. If he doesn’t, I think his little brother, Jalen, will fill in and could be a challenge to contain. Think Michael Vick or RG3.
The Scots come into this game without their leading receivers, Cade Saustad and Scully Jenevein, and their top running back, Jack Kozmetsky. But other good players are filling in and there should not be any drop-off.
Here’s five things to look for Friday at AT&T Stadium:
1. The Scots defense clogging the box and forcing the Broncos to throw the ball.
2. Jack Sell and Junior Dorbah making vicious tackles on the kickoff coverage teams.
3. On the video screen: Stephen Jones high-fiving his dad in the owners box every time John Stephen tosses a TD pass.
4. After the game, the Catalon brothers starting to prepare for the track season.
5. Paxton Alexander enjoying a breakout game, turning short gains into electrifying touchdowns.
This game could be a nail-biter, where the winner is determined on the final drive of the game. Whether HP has the ball or not, this is where the Scots’ offensive line or defensive line puts the team on its back and carries it to the state semifinals.
PARKING, SEATING AND GAME TICKETS: