Written by Matt Wixon
Destri White leads Mesquite Horn over Rockwall, gives school first-ever 6-0 start
ROCKWALL — Destri White threw for more than 300 yards Friday night, but after a late back-and-forth rally of touchdowns, it was the legs of the Mesquite Horn quarterback that clinched the first 6-0 start in school history.
White, who threw four touchdown passes, scored on a 6-yard run with four minutes left as Horn finally ran away from Rockwall, 49-32, at Wilkerson-Sanders Stadium.
“There are some who may pass better than him, and there are some that may be faster,” Horn coach Mike Overton said. “But he’s a winner. I’m not trading him for anybody.”
White, a senior who is orally committed to Rice, completed 19 of 26 passes for 308 yards. He also rushed for 55 yards for Horn (6-0, 2-0 in District 12-5A), which is No. 7 in the area 5A rankings.
White was most potent when finding fellow senior Del’Michael High, with whom he connected nine times for 171 yards and three touchdowns. Their final scoring connection, a 21-yarder that High caught over a defender in the end zone, gave Rockwall a 35-25 lead with 11:54 left.
But Rockwall (3-3, 1-1), which trailed 14-0 only a few minutes into the game, kept rallying. Will Reed threw a 61-yard touchdown pass to Xavier Castille, cutting Horn’s lead to 35-32 with 8:24 left.
White threw his only interception of the game on the next drive, but Horn’s defense forced a punt to get the ball back. Given another chance, White rushed for 5 yards and then 13 yards to get Horn to Rockwall’s 21. After a pass-interference penalty put the ball at the 6 and running back Justyn Oliphant was stopped for no gain, White scored on a keeper to the right side.
“I was just happy to get in the end zone,” said White, who had a hand in 363 of Horn’s 439 yards of total offense. “We knew we had to keep punching it in.”
That’s because Rockwall, with coach Rodney Webb facing his former team for the first time, kept battling back off the ropes. Playing without star running back Chris Warren, who suffered a torn ACL last week, Rockwall got a big performance from Tamba Juanah. The sophomore rushed 28 times for 157 yards and three touchdowns. His 39-yard touchdown run late in the third quarter, in which he broke a tackle and then put his hand to the turf to regain his balance, is destined for highlight reels.
Before the game, members of Rockwall’s 1963 team took the field to celebrate the 50th anniversary of their 7-6 victory over Sugar Land Dulles in the 2A state championship game. Then they watched a game that was nothing like their defensive battle 50 years ago.
Rockwall kept it close, but never led as Horn burned the defense for scoring pass plays of 62, 60 and 29 yards. Many of the yards came after the catch.
“I just have a lot of trust in the receivers,” White said. “I’ve got guys on the outside I can trust, and on the inside, too.”
Follow Matt Wixon on Twitter at @mattwixon.