story driven adult dating sim by Kirk Dooley
The first round of the Texas high school football playoffs is usually an early Christmas present for district champions. Squaring off again the third or fourth seed from the next district over can result in a 70-2 mismatch like the Scots experienced last year.
Mount Pleasant slid into the playoffs last season with a 3-7 record. They seemed to be elated to make the playoffs and face the Scots but were soon ready to get back on the bus and go home, especially after JV Blue running back Cameron Reeves scored on a 16-yard run with two minutes left to make the score 70-2. While the Scots rolled up 516 yards of total offense and 27 first downs, the Tigers were held to 65 total yards and two first downs. It was the Scots’ most dominant victory for the Scots since the 2005 state championship game.
Well, this year things are different. The Scots are facing a team perfectly capable of eliminating them.
The Texarkana Texas High Tigers were undefeated in district play except for a 35-33 loss to Marshall.
Of the four playoff teams from district 16-5A, Marshall and Texas High have the largest enrollments so both of the top 16-5A teams move into the Division I playoffs. Marshall will play Poteet Friday night in Royse City while HP faces Texas High Saturday at 2:00 at the Ford Center at The Star.
The Scots are coming off the softest part of their schedule. Over the past three weeks, the Scots have averaged over 40 points per game and have held their opponents to under 12. Playing a quality team like Texas High shouldn’t be a shock for the Scots because this ain’t their first rodeo.
The Tigers have a new coach they hired away from Flower Mound Marcus – Gerry Stanford. They have a couple of star wide receivers that the Scots must contain – Vonderick Stanley (#4) and Tevailance Hunt (#9), a TCU commit. Quarterback Riley Russell (#11) is undefeated since taking over six games ago.
One statistic jumps out at me. In their first game of the season, the Tigers lost to Bishop Lynch, 24-7. Texas High ran the ball 28 times for a total of minus-13 yards. I’m sure they’ve corrected that by now but that’s the kind of aberration that HP detective Don Woods won’t miss.
The Scots’ past three games were over at halftime. They need to gear up for four quarters of serious football … and it has to be this week.
Texas High and Highland Park have played three times in the playoffs. The Tigers won two and the Scots won the other. The HP win came in 2005 when the Scots and the Tigers boasted two of the best high school quarterbacks in the nation. HP’s Matthew Stafford outperformed Texas High’s Ryan Mallett and the Scots went on to win the state title. Both Stafford and Mallett are now NFL quarterbacks.
Highland Park doesn’t have Matthew Stafford anymore but I’ll take John Stephen Jones any day of the week.