Randall running back Dylan Cheyne (20) Is bottled up by Wichita Falls Rider defenders during a Class 5A Division II regional semifinal Friday at Memorial Stadium. [Lauren Roberts/ Times Record-News]
During a rematch with Wichita Falls Rider on Christmas Eve, the Randall Raiders looked for the most fleeting of moments as if they could get even and get past that third round playoff hurdle.
That lasted for 15 seconds in a Class 5A Division II region semifinal Thursday afternoon.
Randall tied Rider late in the first half at Memorial Stadium. But that was erased when Rider returned the ensuing kickoff for a touchdown and never trailed again to hand Randall 28-7 defeat and end Randall’s season.
It was a much closer game than the first meeting between the two teams at Wichita Falls in Randall’s regular season finale in a District 3-5A Division II game, which Rider won 45-14. Rider again got the upper hand this time, taking a 7-0 lead on a 64-yard touchdown run by quarterback Jacob Rodriguez in the second quarter.
However, Randall (6-6) answered to tie the game with an impressive drive, capped by Brayden Beck’s 1-yard scoring run with 48 seconds left in the half, and Randall looked primed to head into halftime tied at 7-7.
But Rider’s Nick Darcus spoiled those notions, returning the ensuing kickoff 83 yards for a touchdown. Rider (9-2) led 14-7 at halftime and Randall never regained momentum.
Randall had only 181 yards of offense and more telling, ran for only 57 yards. The wind kept Randall’s passing game from mounting a comeback in the second half.
Rodriguez ran for 126 yards and two touchdowns on only 11 carries, and Darcus also ran for a score in the second half.
WF Rider 28, Randall 7
Randall 7 0 0 — 7
Rider 0 14 7 7 — 28
WFR – Jacob Rodriguez 64 run (Kendall Grimes kick), 7:51
Ran – Brayden Beck 1 run (Juan Garcia kick), 0:48
WFR – Nick Darcus 83 kickoff return (Grimes kick), 0:33
WFR – Rodriguez 7 run (Grimes kick), 7:25
WFR – Darcus 38 run (Grimes kick), 7:53
First downs: (Ran) 13; (R) 13
Rushing: (Ran) 28-57; (R) 37-305
Passing: (Ran) 13-25-0 – 124; (R) 2-11-0 – 42
Punts: (Ran) 6-44.3; (R) 4-30.3
Fumbles: (Ran) 2-1; (R) 4-1
Penalties: (Ran) 2-22; (R) 2-25
RUSHING – (Randall) Steven Rodriguez 6-30, Brayden Beck 13-26, Nathan Baker 1-1, Jacob Tijerina 1-1, Braxton Burd 7-(-1). (Rider) Jacob Rodriguez 11-126, Anquan Willis 10-61, Tre Byrd 13-59, Nick Darcus 2-49, Jordan Gibbs 3-10.
PASSING – (Randall) Burd 13-25-0 – 124. (Rider) Rodriguez 2-11-0 – 42.
RECEIVING – (Randall) Baker 4-48, Isayah Hernandez 2-46, Dylan Cheyne 3-10, Tijerina 1-8, Beck 1-6, Rodriguez 2-6. (Rider) Jaden Miller 1-27, Darcus 1-15.