Class 3A-2A roundup: Panhandle wins going away; Vega takes 2OT thriller, Canadian keeps on scoring
Panhandle’s Zach Wood, left, is hoisted up by a teammate after scoring a touchdown against Farwell on Friday night. [Ben Jenkins/ Press Pass Sports]
Panhandle came out guns blazing in the second half putting up 48 unanswered points to rout Farwell 56-21 in a key District 1-2A Division I showdown on the road in Farwell on Friday night.
The first half was a game of runs as the Panthers opened up a 14-0 second quarter lead. That advantage didn’t last long with the Steers stealing the momentum putting up 21 straight points on a Leefe Atkinson fourth down 4-yard score, followed by a Guerrero Olmos pick-six then a Carlitos Castillo touchdown. It looked at that point fans had a true district showdown with Farwell taking a 21-14 lead into half.
But from the third quarter on the Steers scoring stopped and Panhandle started rolling.
Quarterback Wesley Jones found Zion Mercer on a 12-yard strike, tying the game at 21.
Panthers fullback/ linebacker turned the tide for good giving Panhandle the lead back on a 1-yard plunge. Edwards then followed with a 40-yard fumble return, and added another score and the game was quickly out of hand 42-21 Panthers after three. Edwards ended the game with 53 yards on nine carries with two rushing touchdowns and the defensive TD.
Jones led Panhandle to 490 offensive yards going 15-of-25 for 255 yards and two touchdowns. Landyn Hack chipped in on the ground for the Panthers as he carried the rock 12 times for 75 yards and three touchdowns.
Panhandle’s defense has been scrutinized this year, however, did its job holding the Steers to 290 total yards.
The victory lifts the Panthers (7-2 overall) into sole possession of first place in the District 1-2A Division I standings at 4-0. Panhandle can clinch the outright title against Sanford-Fritch on Friday.
Farwell (7-2, 3-1) is in the Class 2A Division I playoffs but must beat Olton (6-3, 3-1) next week for second place.
District 1-2A Division I notes
Olton wins a shootout to improve its seeding, outscoring West Texas High 48-42 in the win. The Mustangs (6-3, 3-1) can clinch second place with a win against Farwell on Friday. WT High falls (3-6, 1-3) can grab the fourth and final spot with a win at Boys Ranch on Friday.
Sanford-Fritch (1-8, 1-3) earned its first win of the season in a 50-0 shutout over Boy Ranch.
Panhandle 56, Farwell 21
Panhandle 7 7 35 7 — 56
Farwell 0 21 0 0 — 21
District 3-2A Division II
Vega quarterback Ryan Grawunder (11) is dragged by Stratford defenders and helped by his offensive lineman Garrett Stribling (58) during the Longhorns thrilling 48-42 double OT win Friday. [Johnette Stribling/ Press Pass Sports]
Vega wins epic 2 OT thriller at Stratford
Fans at E.L. Sam Bass Stadium in Stratford were treated to free football as 48 minutes wasn’t enough to decide a District 3-2A Division II showdown between Vega and Stratford.
This instant classic went into double overtime and when it was all said and done Vega quarterback Ryan Grawunder plunged up the middle on a sneak from the 1-yard line giving the Vega Longhorns a thrilling 48-42 victory, while leaving Stratford stunned on Friday night.
The win is a rare one in the Vega history books. The two teams don’t meet annually, however, it was Vega’s first win against its nemesis Stratford since 1959.
The Elks were ahead for a majority of the game leading 35-26 heading into the final quarter. That‘s when Vega quarterback Ryan Grawunder took the game over. The first-year starting quarterback punched touchdowns in on back-to-back drives putting the Longhorns up 42-35 with eight minutes left. Grawunder didn’t just do it on offense calling signals, he also made his presence known on the defensive side of the ball collecting an interception, forcing a fumble and picking up four tackles along the way. Down a score with very under a minute to go, the Elks started to drive. With the game on the line, Stratford QB Trevor Bell rolled out and delivered a crucial touchdown pass to Anastacio Ibarra to bring his team within one. Josafat Reyes made the game-tying extra-point with 24 seconds left that sent the game to overtime.
With the game tied at 42-42, and both defenses gassed, points were expected but that wasn’t the case. Both defenses stepped up in the first overtime, holding either team out of the end zone. Heading into the second overtime still tied, 42-42, Stratford took over first, but Vega once again kept them from scoring. As Vega took over, they took the momentum as well, driving the ball down inside the 5-yard line before Friday night hero, Grawunder Grawunder called his own number with a sneak for the game-winning score to secure the historic Longhorns win. Grawunder was remarkable throughout completing 12-of-20 0 passes with four touchdowns. He even added on 80 yards on the ground and two more scores. Bell finished his night with four touchdown passes for the Elks going 14-of-28 passing for 193 yards.
Vega (7-2) is in complete control a top the district standings at 3-0. The Longhorns can clinch the outright title against Sunray on Friday. Stratford (4-5, 2-1) will get second if they beat Booker next week.
Vega 48, Stratford 42 (2 OT)
Vega 0 20 14 8 0 6 — 48
Stratford 14 14 7 7 0 0 — 40
Sunray runs past Gruver
The Sunray Bobcat running game was something special Friday night during a 40-19 win against rival Gruver at Bobcats Stadium.
Sunray got off to a hot start finishing the first quarter up 20-0 on the back of their two leading rushers, Tate Debord and Carlos Castellanes. Castellanes capped off the big first quarter with a 92-yard run picking up his second score of the game in the process.
After being slowed down in the second quarter, the Bobcats run attack wasn’t denied with a a 20 point effort in the second half. Debord finished the win with three touchdowns on 17 carries for 174 yards. Crazy enough, Castellanes also ended his night with 174 yards and three touchdowns but did it on only 13 carries.
Sunray (6-4, 2-1) can earn a share of the District 3-2A Division II championship if they can beat Vega (7-2, 3-0) on Friday.
Sunray 40, Gruver 19
Gruver 0 7 6 6 — 19
Sunray 20 0 14 6 — 40
District 4-2A Division II
Wheeler sets up huge disrrict matchup with Wellington
The No. 5-ranked Wheeler Mustangs led from start to finish to nab a meaningful District 4-2A Division II win, 27-16, at home against Clarendon on Friday.
Wheeler’s key victory improves the Mustangs to 8-1 overall and 3-0 in the district race. That sets up a district championship game against No. 3 and unbeaten Wellington (8-0, 3-0) at Powell Field in Wellington this coming Friday.
The two headed monster for Wheeler was at it again. Dual-threat quarterback Heston Marshall and David Rascon both found the end zone twice on the night. After Marshall’s second score late in the third quarter, Clarendon found themselves in a 20-0 hole to dig themselves out of. Clarendon gave it their best putting up 16 in the final two quarters, but the Mustangs stable was just too much for the Bronco’s defense. Rascon led the way for Wheeler taking 22 carries for 199 yards and two scores with Marshall following for 124 two touchdowns of his own.
Wheeler 27, Clarendon 16
Clarendon 0 0 8 8 — 16
Wheeler 14 0 6 7 — 27
Shamrock clinches playoff berth
It was a one-sided affair that not many saw coming as the Shamrock Irish took it to rival Memphis for a 36-0 shutout at El Paso Field in Shamrock Friday night.
Shamrock (4-4, 1-2) snaps a four-game losing skid, and clinches a Class 2A Division II postseason berth in the process.
As great as the Shamrock offense has been, the defense was something special. The Irish were able to silence an offense that has given the best teams in this district a scare at times. On the offensive side however, it was the running game for Shamrock that put them ahead. Junior Sean Wright led his team with 13 carries for 157 yards and two scores on the night. As a compliment to Wright, Caden Peevey put up another 134 yards and a touchdown on 11 carries.
Shamrock 36, Memphis 0
Memphis 0 0 0 0 — 0
Shamrock 8 12 16 0 — 36
District 2-3A Division I
Bushland clinches district title
The Bushland Falcons got a tougher contest then some may have expected but were able to power past Littlefield 35-24 on Friday night at Wildcats Stadium.
Bushland, which bye week comes in the final week of the regular season this coming Friday, clinch the outright District 2-3A Division I championship for a second straight year. The Falcons (7-2 overall) also finished off the regular season with six straight wins.
Though the Falcons lost some momentum in the second quarter, they never trailed against the Wildcats (2-6, 1-2).
Bushland running back Ethan Fuentes scored a pair of touchdowns, and Kash Bradley added a 78-yard kickoff return.
Bushland 35, Littlefield 24
Bushland 14 7 7 7 — 35
Littlefield 0 12 6 6 — 24
Dalhart downs Muleshoe
Dalhart clinched a playoff spot by using a big second half to put away Muleshoe 42-21 Friday night at Wolves Stadium.
Dalhart moves to 2-1 in District 3-2A Division I and 6-3 overall. Muleshoe falls to 2-6, 0-3.
The game was actually low scoring tied 7-7 in the first half before a combined 35 points in the third quarter. The Golden Wolves offense started clicking behind the connection of quarterback Brennan Lloyd and receiver Xavier Hammett. Lloyd found Xavier Hammett on three separate occasions on passing touchdowns of 64, 54 and 42 yards. Lloyd finished the game throwing for 228 yards, while rushing for 81 yards. Hammett had a career night snagging 11 catches for 194 yards and three TDs.
Dalhart can clinch the No. 2-seed in district if they beat River Road on Friday.
Dalhart 42, Muleshoe 21
Muleshoe 0 7 14 0 — 21
Dalhart 0 7 21 14 — 42
District 3-3A DII
Canadian quarterback Joshua Culwell (14) fires a pass against Tulia on Friday night. [Alan Hale/ Press Pass Sports]
Canadian continues scoring barrage in blanking of Tulia
Canadian’s offense is on a complete tear showing no signs of slowing down anytime soon. The No. 1-ranked Wildcats scored on every first half possession on their way to a dominating 70-0 shutout of Tulia on Friday night at Wildcats Stadium.
Canadian (8-1 overall) clinches at least a share of the District 3-3A Division II crown with a 5-0 mark. The Wildcats, who also extended their Texas Panhandle-best win streak to 43 straight games dating back to 2012, can win their seventh straight outright district title at rival Childress at 7 p.m. Friday.
The Wildcats offense is absolutely on fire during the four league games they’ve been able to play. Canadian didn’t get to square off with Spearman due to the Lynx COVID-19 concerns, but in four victories against Highland Park, Dimmitt, Friona and Tulia, the Wildcats have outscored their opponents by a combined 302-20.
Quarterback Joshua Culwell was stellar once again Friday. The senior torched the Hornets secondary in only two quarters of work, helping Canadian to a 63-0 halftime lead, completing 17-of-19 passes for 307 yards with five touchdowns. Twister Kelton was Culwell’s main target snagging six catches for 135 yards with a score.
A highlight to keep an eye on is Canadian kicker Edgar Salazar. The four-year starting kicker is inching closer to the state record books. Salazar went 10-for-10 on extra points against Tulia (3-6, 1-4). That gives Salazar 293 made extra points for his career which is only 11 extra points behind Aledo’s Chance Nevarez 304 from 2010-2013.
Canadian 70, Tulia 0
Tulia 0 0 0 0 — 0
Canadian 35 28 7 0 — 70
Spearman takes down Friona
Wading through the mud of Lynx Stadium after a nasty week of weather, Spearman was able to pull together to get past Friona for a 42-22 victory on Friday night.
The win puts the Lynx in the Class 3A Division II playoffs, as Spearman moves to 8-1 overall and 4-1 in District 3-3A Division II. Friona falls to 5-4, 2-4 but can still make the playoffs if they beat Highland Park on Friday.
The Lynx were able to overcome the sloppy conditions putting the contest away with a 21-point second quarter. Quarterback Jack Wilkerson continued his big year racking up 150 yards on 20 carries with a touchdown. He also added a pair of TDs through the air on 67 yards passing. Division I four-star prospect Brennen Thompson showed his speed through the mud rushing for 119 yards on only four carries with two scores, and had 45 receiving yards with another touchdown.
Spearman 42, Friona 22
Friona 0 6 0 16 — 22
Spearman 0 21 14 7 — 42
Highland Park keeps playoff hopes alive
The Highland Park Hornets made the most of playing in 21 days after COVID-19 concerns by dismantling Dimmitt 46-0 on Friday night.
The win was crucial for the Hornets (2-7) who sit tied with Friona (5-4) for the fourth and final playoff spot at 2-3 in District 3-3A Division II. Highland Park travels to Friona on Friday to decide the final postseason berth.
Highland Park jumped all over the Bobcats (0-10, 0-6) from the start. Caden Thompson
ran for 78 yards with a touchdown, and was 6-of-10 passing for 162 yards with three passing scores.
and TD. Cade Seaman was Thompson’s go-to weapon snagging for catches for 48 yards with two touchdowns.
Highland Park 46, Dimmitt 0