Written by SportsDayDFW.com
Three storylines: TCA-Addison's upset victory against Frisco Wakeland, 37-34
The finish of the TCA-Addison vs. Frisco Wakeland game Friday night was flush with craziness - a private school taking down a 4A team, a controversial touchback call in the final minutes, bullying my way through dogpiles of TCA-Addison student fans and players to snag a couple interviews postgame.
And all on a tight deadline.
It was too much to fit into one quick recap, and TCA-Addison's 37-34 victory deserved a little more attention. So here's a further look at three storylines from the game:
Alex Marr's big night / costly mistake
I couldn't tell from my perspective up in the press box. Neither could TCA-Addison coach Steve Hayes or Wakeland coach Marty Secord on the sidelines.
When Wakeland running back Alex Marr crossed the goal line with less than three minutes remaining, down 37-34, the ball left his hands and went through the back of the end zone. Officials ruled he lost control before stepping across the line. Instead of a possible game-clinching touchdown, it was ruled a touchback - TCA-Addison ball at their own 20-yard line.
Said coach Secord: "I won't really know until we see the film. They said he didn't have possession. I trust that they're right. I hope they're right … They said he lost control of the ball, but I certainly thought from where I was standing that he crossed the goal line. But I don't know, we'll see."
Said coach Hayes: "I couldn't see where (Marr) was in relationship with the goal line, but I definitely saw the ball leave his hand and go out of the end zone."
Regardless of your opinion on whether it was the right call, you've got to feel for Marr. He was phenomenal leading up to that point: 16 carries, 156 yards and 3 touchdowns.
So imagine how Secord felt addressing his team following the heartbreaking loss.
"You don't have time to be down," Secord said. "We have the district race next week. We're playing for all the marbles. Whoever goes 1-0 in district is sitting in the driver's seat, or they're sitting in the car. We've just got to put it behind us."
Nahshon Ellerbe dominates, shows Wakeland what it missed out on
TCA-Addison running back Nahshon Ellerbe was all smiles following the victory, jumping up and down with teammates and fans who rushed the field. He played in the 68-23 blowout loss his team suffered to Wakeland last season. Wakeland also defeated TCA-Addison in 2011 (49-31) and 2010 (43-0).
This time around, Ellerbe led the ground attack in the upset victory: 21 carries, 173 yards and one touchdown.
What made the win even sweeter was that Ellerbe could have been suited up for Wakeland had he not picked the private school route. Ellerbe played in the Wakeland system and attended Griffin Middle School, which feeds right into coach Secord's program.
"It means everything to me, because I used to go to (Wakeland)," Ellerbe said. "When I came here, they're thinking, 'What is he doing at that little private school?' Now they know what I'm doing."
Said Secord: "(Ellerbe) was supposed to be at our place, but he's not. He's a great running back … a really good player."
Private school victory
TCA-Addison entered the game as Sports Day HS's top-ranked large private school. Wakeland was the 20th-ranked 4A team.
So talk about a statement win for TCA-Addison. It's the ultimate confidence booster as it heads into a matchup with Fort Worth Nolan in two weeks - the team that defeated TCA-Addison in the state title game last season, 48-45.
"I think we still have a long way to go, but I feel pretty good about week four," Hayes said. "I think we'll celebrate this for a few hours and then our kids want to play Nolan."