Written by SportsDayDFW.com
North Crowley 26, Weatherford 19
WEATHERFORD - The Weatherford Kangaroos patiently stuck with their triple-option offense to overcome an 11-point halftime deficit and take the lead against North Crowley early in the fourth quarter.
But the Panthers, running their no-huddle spread offense, just as patiently marched for what proved to be the winning touchdown and left Weatherford with a 26-19 victory Friday night in the District 4-5A opener between winless teams.
North Crowley quarterback Josh Price threw for three touchdowns and led his team with 77 rushing yards. He carried four times for 47 yards on the winning drive, which he capped with a 5-yard touchdown pass to David Fox. Price ran in for the two-point conversion to give the Panthers (1-3, 1-0) their seven-point lead with 4:55 left.
Defensive end Nathaniel Taylor ensured the Panthers' victory when he tackled the Kangaroos' Austin Livingston one yard short of a first down on a 4th-and-3 run near midfield with 1:54 remaining.
Price, who completed 10 of 19 passes for 117 yards, threw his first two touchdown passes in the second quarter to help overcome Weatherford's only other lead.
North Crowley had scored first on Jacob Starr's 31-yard field goal, and Weatherford (0-4, 0-1) had answered for a 7-3 lead late in the first quarter on quarterback Trooper Reynolds' sneak on fourth-and-goal at the 1.
But the Panthers led, 18-7, at halftime thanks to Price's 5-yard pass to Fox and 41-yard scoring strike to Devin Freeman. After the Price-to-Fox touchdown, Sawyer Maness ran in for two points from the swinging gate formation.
In the second half, Weatherford stuck to its running game. Bartels scored his first touchdown from 5 yards out with 6:58 left in the third quarter. An illegal block penalty negated a successful two-point run, and the ensuing PAT kick was blocked.
The Kangaroos took a 19-18 lead on Bartels' second score, a 35-yard run with 9:05 to play. That's when Price led the Panthers on their winning, 11-play, 65-yard drive.
Before that possession, North Crowley had had the ball only twice in the second half with nine yards of total offense.