LAMPASAS — Jaylon Porter was excited about the outcome, but he was more impressed by everything that occurred before.
In a battle of preseason top-10 programs, Class 4A, Division I No. 9 Lampasas was never challenged, building an early advantage before cruising to a 52-10 victory against Liberty Hill.
Porter, however, believes the win occurred long before the game started.
“We were practicing hard all week,” the senior receiver said, “because we knew this was going to be a challenge.
“So, everybody was up at school working in the morning, afternoon and night just trying to get some extra work in, because we knew this game could set the tone for the remainder of the season.”
The extra effort paid immediate dividends.
The Badgers recorded the first 10 points of the game and took a 24-point advantage, 31-7, into halftime as Porter hauled in a game-high seven catches for 153 yards and two touchdowns.
Following the victory, Lampasas quarterback Ace Whitehead, who accounted for six touchdowns in the win, echoed his teammate’s sentiments.
“This was our best week of overall team football in all aspects,” the junior said. “That was exactly what we wanted to do, and we came out and did it.
“I’m just really proud of the guys for this week.”
Whitehead completed 16 of 25 passes for 251 yards and four touchdowns along with rushing for 37 yards and a pair of trips into the end zone.
As a team, the Badgers produced 372 yards of offense, and the showing was complemented by the defense delivering eight turnovers, including four in the first half, when Lampasas (5-2, 2-0 District 14-4A) constructed an insurmountable lead.
The Badgers did not need long to get on the scoreboard as Whitehead punctuated the game’s opening drive with a 47-yard touchdown
run, and after forcing a pair of turnovers, Lampasas increased its lead to 10-0 on Whitehead’s 36-yard field goal late in the period.
Liberty Hill (2-4, 0-2) responded on the ensuing drive, capping off a 76-yard drive with Eric De La Cruz’s 25-yard run into the end zone, but the Panthers would not get any closer.
Whitehead accounted for three touchdowns in the second quarter, sandwiching a pair of scoring passes to Porter and Michael Murray
Jr. around his second rushing touchdown, and the Badgers took a 31-7 advantage into halftime.
Then, Lampasas scored on three of its four possessions in the second half, while limiting the Panthers to just a field goal.
“We always want to play physical and play complementary football,” Lampasas head coach Troy Rogers said, “and I think we did that.
“We took advantage almost every time we stopped them, and that’s what we want to do.”
Murray converted both of his receptions into touchdowns, and Badgers’ leading rusher Jack Jerome finished with 67 yards and a touchdown.
Now, Lampasas turns its attention toward Friday’s contest at Taylor, where a victory would put the Badgers in a tie atop the district standings with two games remaining.
But Porter refuses to look too far ahead.
“We’re just focusing on one week at a time,” he said. “After last week, we were 1-0 in district, but we’ve had the mentality that we’re 0-0.
“We’re only worried about Taylor right now. We can’t let anything slip away.”
14-4A, DIV. I STANDINGS
Canyon Lake (2-0)
Liberty Hill (0-2)
- Fischer Canyon Lake 28, Burnet 20
- Fredericksburg 35, Taylor 10
- Lampasas 52, Liberty Hill 10