Written by SportsDayDFW.com
Area 3A/2A/others playoff roundup: Freshman QB powers Celina; Argyle advances
Loss of star running back doesn’t stop team on way to quarterfinals
FRISCO — For the second straight week, star running back Jamarick Simmons was limited with a leg injury, leaving the Celina Bobcats with some major questions on offense.
And for the second straight week, Nathan Elliott provided the answers.
Elliott, Celina’s freshman quarterback, accounted for 305 total yards — including 178 on the ground — and all five Bobcat touchdowns as Celina (10-0) pulled away from Lovejoy (8-4) with a 37-17 win in their Class 3A Division I regional playoff game.
The Bobcats dug themselves into a 10-0 hole in the first quarter after their first three drives yielded a pair of three-and-outs and an interception. But that’s when Elliott took over, knowing he had to make up for Simmons’ absence.
“It just makes me want to work harder because I know I’m going to have to carry a little extra weight,” Elliott said. “I just prepared really hard for this week.”
It showed. Elliott got the Bobcats on the board with a 30-yard run early in the second quarter, then gashed the Lovejoy defense for a 63-yard score in midway through the third to give Celina its first lead of the night.
But the key play for Celina came just three minutes later, when Zack Bilderback hit tight end Blake Pasqua for a 31-yard gain on a fake punt. Elliott scored on the very next play, putting Celina firmly in control.
It was very likely the best game of the quarterback’s young career.
“Maybe,” Elliott said. “But there’s always room for improvement.”
Celina will play Henderson in the 3A Division I quarterfinal next week.
— Ryan Jones
Argyle 40, Prosper 24
DENTON — After missing three games in the middle of District 9-3A play because of illness and playing the last two games at half-strength, Argyle sophomore wide receiver Ian Sadler showed he is at least close to being back at full strength on Friday night.
In a Class 3A Division II area-round playoff game at C.H. Collins Athletic Complex, Sadler and his quarterback turned a tight, physical game into an easy victory. The duo produced a huge second quarter as Argyle defeated Prosper, 40-24, to avenge a Week 5 loss to close out nondistrict play.
“He’s back,” said Argyle quarterback Austin Aune, who is committed to TCU. “You could obviously see it tonight. He did a great job catching the ball. They gave us some looks that we were gonna give him the ball, and we executed. It obviously showed on the scoreboard.”
By the time the night was over, Sadler had seven catches for 220 yards and three touchdowns, all coming in the second quarter, when Argyle outscored Prosper, 22-3.
“He’s just electric,” Argyle coach Todd Rodgers said. “We have a lot of really good wide receivers. If they give one and take one away we can hurt you.
“He has something extra, though. He’s a very competitive kid, and he’s able to go get the football.”
Argyle (11-1) advances to meet Carthage, the team that knocked it out of the postseason last year in the regional final. The teams will meet 7:30 p.m. Friday at Mansfield’s Newsom Stadium.
Prosper got on the board first Friday with a 70-yard touchdown run from Darius Hunter before Argyle took a 9-7 lead at the end of the first quarter with a touchdown and a safety.
In the second quarter, Argyle hit another gear with Aune and Sadler.
Aune hit Sadler on a quick slant and Sadler did the rest, taking the pass 70 yards to the end zone.
After Prosper missed a field goal attempt, Argyle started at its 20-yard line with five minutes to play in the half. On the first play, Aune hit Sadler on an identical pattern, this time for an 80-yard touchdown.
Argyle did not let up, recovering an onside kick. Six plays later, Sadler was in the end zone again on an 11-yard toss from Aune to give him three touchdowns in 4 1/2 minutes for a 31-10 lead.
— Adam Boedeker
Melissa 19, Eustace 10
Melissa’s defense stopped Eustace on fourth down at the Melissa 35-yard line and scored a touchdown on the ensuing possession in the fourth quarter to advance to the 2A Division I Region II semifinals with a 19-10 victory on Friday at Kincaide Stadium.
Eustace (10-2) controlled the clock and took a 3-0 lead with its run-first offense. Eustace had a chance to extend the lead, but a costly red zone turnover led to Melissa (9-1) scoring the first touchdown of the game on a 54-yard pass from Wes McQueen to Jackson Bush. Melissa added a 35-yard Juan Salas field goal as time expired in the second quarter.
Eustace started the third quarter from its 28-yard line and marched 72 yards, all on running plays, and tied the score at 10 on a Tyler Folsom 4-yard run with 4:28 remaining in the quarter. Melissa answered early in the fourth quarter with another Salas field goal, this one from 29 yards.
Eustace attempted only four passes, completing one and being sacked on two other attempts.
Carthage 31, North Forney 12
TYLER — Blake Bogenschutz threw four touchdown passes as Carthage routed North Forney in a Class 3A Division II Region II area round game at Rose Stadium.
Bogenschutz was 12-of-16 for 155 yards and three scores in the first half as Carthage (9-3) took a 21-0 halftime lead and cruised to its 19th straight playoff win.
Edward Pope, who has committed to TCU, caught five passes for 49 yards with two touchdowns for Carthage. Tevin Pipkin rushed for 108 yards on 15 carries.
Stephen Buckley rushed for 129 yards and a touchdown to lead North Forney (10-2), which had its 10-game winning streak snapped.
Carthage limited North Forney’s triple-option rushing attack to just 66 yards prior to a 94-yard Buckley touchdown run with 2:33 left in the game.
Van Alstyne 28, Princeton 0
MCKINNEY — Jordan Barnes rushed for 196 yards and Drew Dennis added 134 to help Van Alstyne move into the third round of the Class 3A playoffs at Ron Poe Stadium.
Van Alstyne (9-3) will face either Van or Gilmer in the Division II Region II semifinals. The game will be played at Forney.
Barnes, who had three touchdowns, put Van Alstyne up 14-0 with two scoring runs in the first quarter. Dennis (125 yards passing) then pushed the lead to 21-0 at the half with a 29-yard touchdown pass to Jared Ramsey.
Van Alstyne kept the lead with strong play from its defense, with Barnes wrapping up the scoring with a 44-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter.
Princeton ends its season at 7-5 and was led by quarterback Stacey Dillard with 207 yards in total offense.
Snyder 34, Kennedale 10
WEATHERFORD — Keenon Ward rushed for 299 yards and three touchdowns to lead Snyder.
Leading just 14-10 at the half, Snyder took advantage of two Kennedale fumbles to turn in the Class 3A Region II Division II area playoff game at Weatherford High School.
Ward scored all three of his touchdowns in the second half on runs of 31, 5 and 91 yards. He also threw a 25-yard touchdown pass in the first half.
Snyder finished with 461 yards, 418 of those on the ground. Kennedale, led by Cody Coleman with 126 yards, finished the night with 251 yards. Coleman got his team’s only score on a 74-yard run to cut the halftime deficit to 14-10.
Ward’s 91-yard run following a Kennedale turnover put his team up 28-10 and all but sealed the victory.
Mildred 47, Omaha Paul Pewitt 28
LINDALE —Nic Shimonek threw for five touchdowns and 248 yards as Mildred defeated Class 2A powerhouse Omaha Paul Pewitt. Four of Shimonek’s touchdowns were to Daniel Folsom as he accounted for 190 receiving yards.
Logan Shelton and Draylon Sterling each added a rushing touchdown and Mildred moves on to the 3rd round for the first time since 1976 to play Hughes Springs in Van , Texas. Sedrick Johnson had a touchdown and 174 yards for Paul Pewitt.
San Antonio Christian 17, Fort Worth Christian 14
KILLEEN—Turner Goudge kicked a 31-yard field goal with 1:33 remaining to give San Antonio Christian the victory in a TAPPS Division II quarterfinal game at Leo Buckley Stadium.
San Antonio Christian (10-2) gained possession with 5:19 left at the Fort Worth Christian 32 following a 5-yard punt. After managing one first down, Boudge drilled the game-winning field goal that advanced San Antonio Christian to the semifinals next weekend.
Cade Stone led Fort Worth Christian with 126 yards rushing on 11 carries.
Fort Worth Calvary Christian 44, Shelton 14
COPPELL — Quarterback Madison Ross threw for two touchdowns and ran for three, as Fort Worth Calvary advanced in the TAPPS Division III playoffs.
Calvary totaled over 400 yards of offense and never had to punt.