The Killeen Kangaroos are a proud breed, but not too proud to take a little help.
Thanks to Copperas Cove’s win over Harker Heights on Friday, Killeen clinched its fifth straight playoff berth and first in 5A since 2001.
“We would’ve liked to have done it ourselves, but we did enough to get in. That’s what is is all about ... that just happened to be the way that it went,” said Killeen head coach Sam Jones.
The Roos play Mansfield on Friday at Lumpkin Stadium in Waxahachie at 7:30 p.m. in their first 5A playoff game since losing to eventual state champion Lufkin in a 5A-Division II regional round loss 11 years ago.
Killeen (7-3, 4-3 8-5A) lost to Temple 63-56 in its regular season finale on Thursday night, but because of point differential and head-to-head tie-breakers, the Roos clinched District 8-5A’s third-place playoff seed, and will be the district’s top Division I, or big school, representative in the postseason.
Mansfield (6-4, 4-3 7-5A) won four of its final five games to finish fourth in District 7-5A to clinch the district’s second Division I seed.
Meanwhile, with Friday’s 34-6 win over the Knights, the Bulldawgs secured a 5A-Division II bi-district playoff berth. Cove (7-3, 5-2) is the No. 2 seed and plays the Cedar Hill Longhorns (6-4, 5-2) on Saturday at Panther Stadium in Hewitt at 2:30 p.m..
With the loss, Harker Heights dropped to fourth and faces the daunting task of opening its first playoff appearance since 2006 against No. 2 DeSoto on Saturday at 1:30 p.m. at Waco ISD Stadium.
Temple needed Heights to upset Cove for their second straight playoff appearance while also eliminating the Roos from contention.
Gatesville, which defeated Liberty Hill on Friday to sweep District 8-3A and finish its first undefeated season since 2001, plays Alvarado at Panther Stadium at 7:30 p.m. Friday.