• September 30, 2014

5A BLITZ REWIND: Big plays lift Wolves to big win over Knights

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Posted: Monday, October 21, 2013 4:30 am | Updated: 9:24 am, Thu Sep 11, 2014.

Shoemaker entered its game against Harker Heights hoping to keep the Knights’ potent offense off the field.

The Grey Wolves’ rushing offense certainly did its part, as Shoemaker piled up 386 yards on the ground in Friday’s 46-23 victory.

But Shoemaker didn’t exactly keep the Knights off the field thanks to the explosive plays by the Grey Wolves’ skill players.

Shoemaker had eight plays that went for 20 or more yards, four of which went for 30-plus yards, and two of which were 60-plus yards.

Shoemaker began the second half with a two-play scoring drive, courtesy of a 72-yard run by Rayshun Spearman.

The Grey Wolves capped the scoring on a 14-yard run by Ziere Banner. Banner set up his touchdown with a 64-yard scamper on the previous play.

Banner and Spearman both rushed for 100-plus yards as did Derrick Thomas, who opened the scoring in the game with a 40-yard touchdown on a jet sweep.

Heights had explosive plays of its own, five to be exact, to help it get back into the game in the second half.

Quarterback Troy Smith was particularly effective, accounting for 375 yards of total offense, including a catch for 42 yards.

But at the end of a rainy Friday night, it was the big plays by Shoemaker that ruled the day.

Harris’ string of 300-yard passing games snapped at six

The only thing louder and brighter than junior quarterback Manny Harris’ passes this season was the lightning that came down on the area Friday during Copperas Cove’s 41-14 home win over Belton.

A lightning delay that extended halftime by 30 minutes accomplished what no opposing defense has been able to do yet against Harris, limit his productivity.

This season, Harris eclipsed the 300-yard passing mark in each of Cove’s first six games and broke the school’s passing record, but he was held to just 176 yards and a touchdown Friday, completing 11 of 27 passes.

Before halftime, Harris completed 8 of 20 passes for 148 yards, but weather conditions forced both teams to rely on their ground game, which Harris contributed to by rushing for 119 yards and two scores.

Harris may already have a passing record, but teammate Phillip Baptiste is well on his way to breaking the school’s single-season receiving yards record. Baptiste has 954 on the season and is only 11 yards short of current Chicago Bears cornerback Charles Tillman’s record set in 1998 (in 13 games).

— Albert Alvarado

Killeen needs help for playoff entry

Killeen is on the verge of missing the playoffs for the first time since 2007.

If the Roos had beaten Midway on Friday, they would be in a five-way tie for the third and fourth playoff spots.

But after losing 58-20 to the Panthers (6-1, 4-0 8-5A), the Roos (1-6, 1-3) occupy the seventh spot in the league, one game behind Belton, Copperas Cove, Harker Heights and Shoemaker.

The Roos likely will need extensive help to extend their season. A win at Belton next week would sink the Tigers (2-5, 2-2) beneath the Roos.

The Roos also could get help from losses by Harker Heights (2-2) — which will face a Temple team (3-1) that just put up 63 points on a tough Ellison defense — and Shoemaker, which faces district leader Waco Midway (4-0).

— Brian Bradley

Temple continues momentum with win against Ellison

Ellison appeared to be building toward its first victory in the first two weeks of district play, but that has changed in the last two games after the Eagles fell to a hot team for the second straight week.

After a 34-point victory against rival Belton, Temple defeated Ellison 63-15 in its homecoming game to improve to 3-1 in district play.

A week after Temple ran for 400-plus yards against Belton, Jeff Carr and Marques Hatcher combined for 335 yards and six touchdowns on the ground. Hatcher also scored all three of his touchdowns in the third quarter.

It was the second consecutive week that the Wildcats rushed for more than 400 yards as a team.

Hayward Clay continued to be a bright spot for the Eagles, hauling in a 51-yard touchdown catch in the first quarter.

Clay passed for two touchdowns the previous week against Harker Heights and caught two touchdowns the week before against Belton.

— Jordan Mason

THIS WEEK:

  • Copperas Cove (4-3, 2-2 8-5A) at Ellison (0-7, 0-4), 7:30 p.m. Friday (Hood Stadium): Cove’s debut at Fort Hood on Sept. 27 didn’t go so well as the Dawgs lost to Killeen for the first time since 1995. A loss in their return to Hood Stadium would be even more stunning, as the Eagles have lost 27 in a row.
  • Killeen (1-6, 1-3 8-5A) at Belton (2-5, 2-2), 7:30 p.m. Friday: The Roos have dropped three straight since upsetting Cove and are in danger of missing the playoffs. The Roos beat the Tigers 45-39 last year at Killeen.
  • Shoemaker (4-3, 2-2 8-5A) at Waco Midway (6-1, 4-0): Now in the thick of the 8-5A playoff race, the Grey Wolves can really boost their chances with a victory over the district-leading Panthers. Midway has won 15 straight district games since a 26-24 loss to Waco in 2011, when it was in District 8-4A. But the Panthers needed overtime and a defensive stop to beat Cove in their last home game.
  • Temple (4-3, 3-1 8-5A) at Harker Heights (2-5, 2-2), 7:30 p.m. Friday (Leo Buckley Stadium): Heights hosts a white-hot Temple team that has now won its last two games by a combined 82 points.

BY THE NUMBERS

  • 520 — Total yards for Temple in Friday’s 63-15 win over Ellison.
  • 368 — Combined rushing yards for the Shoemaker trio of Ziere Banner, Rayshun Spearman and Derrick Thomas on Friday.
  • 11 — Receiving yards needed by Phillip Baptiste to break the Cove single-season mark.
  • 3 — Games remaining for Ellison to avoid its third consecutive winless season.
  • 15 — Consecutive district wins for Midway, which hosts Shoemaker on Friday.
  • 280 — Yards by which Midway outgained Killeen on Friday in a 58-20 victory.

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