Woodlands’ dethrones top ranked Allen, DeSoto uses two fumble return touchdowns to eject Klein Collins
Now that the high school football playoff are over, state championship matchups are set. Championship week kicks off December 14-17. All games will be played at AT&T Stadium and will air live on FoxSports Southwest.
6A Division I
In the biggest shocker of the day, The Woodlands (15-0) trounced top-ranked Allen (14-1), 36-28. Playing on high emotions after senior linebacker Grant Milton suffered a severe head injury a couple weeks ago in a win over Austin Bowie, The Highlanders’ advanced to state for the first time since falling to North shore, 23-7 in the 2003 Class 5A Division I Finals. For Allen, it’s the second straight loss in the semifinals. Last season the Eagles lost to state finalist Austin Westlake, 23-14 in 6A Division I, to snap a 57-game winning streak.
Lake Travis (14-1), who will face the Highlanders on Saturday at 8 PM for a chance to take home its first 6A title, ended Atascocita’s (12-2) best season with a message-sending, 63-21 victory, rolling to its second consecutive title game. The Cavaliers lost to Katy, 34-7 last season in the 6A Division II Championship game.
In 6A Division II, DeSoto, in the champion round for the first time in school history, had to come from behind to take down a tough Klein Collins team, 42-31. With the win, the Eagles (15-0) will meet Cibolo Steele (14-1) on Saturday at 4 PM, who routed Cinco Ranch (11-4), 35-14, next Saturday with a chance to avenge a last season regular season lost, 35-33. The tale of two half’s watched the Tigers (13-2) take advantage of two first half DeSoto turnovers to carry a 28-14 lead into intermission.
However, it was the Eagles, who upended Collins best playoff run in school history with three fourth-quarter turnovers. Eagles outside linebacker Ashton Brooks and free safety Isaiah Stewart returned fumbles for back-breaking touchdowns. Trailing, 31-28, Klein Collins tailback D’Anthony Doyle penetrated The Eagles defense before fumbling the ball, as Brooks scooped up the loose ball and outran Collins defense 42-yards to the end zone to give DeSoto’s its first lead of the game and one that would stick, 35-28. Stewart provided the icing by stripping Tigers junior running back Josh Powell of the ball and racing 42 yards for a score to give DeSoto a 42-31 victory and its first birth in the state championship game.
5A Division I
Temple will pack its hopes into ATT Stadium next Saturday afternoon, after defeating two of Houston’s best teams in back-to-backs weekends. In the quarterfinal round, the Wildcats rallied late in the fourth quarter to hand Manvel its first loss of the season, 24-23. The Wildcats sidelined undefeated Richmond Foster, 31-24 in its semifinal win to move into the championship round where it will have its hands full when it faces a team on a roll in Highland Park. Highland Park reached the finals by easing past Mansfield Legacy, 14-7 and No. 3 ranked Denton Ryan, 31-24.
5A Division II
With a 38-14 victory over Mesquite Poteet, Aledo hopes to win its third title in the last four seasons when it lines up against Corpus Christi Calallen Friday night at 8 PM. Calallen defeated College Station 31-30 to advance to Arlington.
4A Division I
Abilene Wylie (12-1) got past Kennedale (11-4), 21-13 to set up a date with Carthage (12-2), who stunned China Springs (13-2), 26-20, 4 PM on Friday.
4A Division II
West Orange-Stark (15-0) slammed Navarro, 49-7 to make reservations for Arlington and a chance to defend its title when it meets Sweetwater (13-2), who surprised Gilmer (13-2), 48-35, Friday at noon. The Mustangs held Navarro (14-1) to seven points.