Written by Corbett Smith
Carroll rallies from 10 down, holds Fossil Ridge scoreless in second half to clinch District 4-5A title
KELLER — Southlake Carroll was a few big plays away from losing a district game.
But to quarterback Ryan Agnew, that’s exactly what it needed.
Carroll rallied from a 10-point halftime deficit, grabbing three second-half interceptions and shutting out Keller Fossil Ridge after halftime in a 31-27 win at Keller ISD Athletic Complex.
The win clinched the District 4-5A title for Carroll (8-1, 6-0), and perhaps as important, gave it a win to build off of before starting the 5A Division I playoffs in two weeks.
“Definitely, in a game like this, you’re going to get a test that’s going to show who’s got that true determination,” Agnew said.
The junior, who finished with 143 yards rushing and two touchdowns while adding 110 passing yards and a score, added: “You aren’t going to see your true colors by blowing people out 60-0 or anything like that.”
Since its opening-season loss to Allen, Carroll had won seven straight games by an average of 46 points.
Fossil Ridge (6-3, 4-2) wasn’t just a sparring partner, however. In the first half, it looked like it might have a knockout punch. Ryan Parker had 11 catches for 151 yards at halftime for Fossil Ridge, while Jacob Gnacinski had 39 passing attempts at halftime. For a moment, he was on pace to break Johnny Manziel’s state record of 75 attempts, set with Kerrville Tivy in 2010.
But Carroll’s defense stiffened in the second half, forcing two interceptions and a three-and-out on three straight possessions. Agnew scored on a 2-yard run with 43 seconds left in the third quarter as Carroll retook the lead for good.
“We didn’t play hard enough in the first half,” Carroll linebacker Matt Miller said. “We came out after halftime ready to play.”
Follow Corbett Smith on Twitter at @corbettsmithDMN.