Tonight’s Games

— Class 6A Division II —


Burleson Stadium

Records: Temple Wildcats 9-2; Rockwall-Heath Hawks 10-1

Last week: Temple 28, Waxahachie 14; Rockwall-Heath 35, Garland Naaman Forest 6

Last year’s meeting: Rockwall-Heath 56, Temple 28

Winner gets: Willis or Tomball

Wildcats to watch: RB Samari Howard, WR Devan Williams, WR Mikal Harrison-Pilot, QB Reese Rumfield, WR Tr’Darius Taylor, LB Taurean York, LB Faylin Lee, DL Eric Shorter, DL Tomas Torres, DL Ayden Brown, DL Jaylon Jackson, DB Naeten Mitchell, DB Jaden Jackson, DB LaMichael Thompson, DB Zion Moore, DB Jalen Wardale.

Hawks to watch: QB Josh Hoover, RB Zach Evans, RB Brittan Snider, WR Jordan Nabors, WR Jay Fair, WR Lance Mason, DB Layne Horak, LB Alan Crawford, DL Justice Ryder, DB Peyton Williams, LB Bryce President.

Note: It’s been 11 months since Temple and Rockwall-Heath met at McLane Stadium in the second round of the Class 6A Division II playoffs, with the Hawks knocking off the Wildcats. Here they are again, in another area playoff. Other than the venue and a handful of departed players, not much has changed between the two — they are still really good teams. Both enter as district champions with nine-game winning streaks and offenses with playmakers galore. Temple learned last season that when it does manage to get a defensive stop, it must capitalize on that opportunity to put up points. Playing catch-up with the Hawks isn’t easy to do. Hoover (Indiana), Evans (Minnesota), Nabors (Baylor) and Fair (Auburn) all have committed to college offers. Evans missed most of last year’s game after an injury in the first quarter. Hoover, though, passed for 454 yards, 347 of those to the duo of Nabors and Fair. Howard went for more than 100 yards rushing in last year’s contest. Harrison-Pilot had a 57-yard TD catch and Taylor a 19-yard scoring reception. Howard, an Air Force commitment, and Harrison-Pilot, who’s entertained multiple Division I offers, have combined for 34 touchdowns this season. York leads Temple with 128 tackles. Mitchell is second with 61.

— Class 2A Division I —


Bruce Field, Athens

Records: Holland Hornets 9-2; Shelbyville Dragons 7-4

Last week: Holland 40, Jewett Leon 7; Shelbyville 53, Price Carlisle 43

Winner gets: Centerville or Hawkins

Hornets to watch: RB/LB JC Chaney, RB/DL Clayton Baggerly, OL/DL Albert Martinez, TE/DL/RB Dawson Haney, RB Christian Michalek, RB/DL Klay Pursche, QB Desi Cantu.

Dragons to watch: QB Jakory Standley, RB Zay Cartwright, DB Franydric Buckley, RB Talarrian Lister, WR Tre McGee, Adabran Davis.

Note: No stranger to playoff success, Holland enters the area round for the sixth time in the past seven years. A win tonight would push it into the third round for the first time since 2019’s run to the state quarterfinals. Last week, the Hornets produced their typical rushing (327 yards) and defensive (132 yards allowed) results and added three touchdowns through the air, their most in a game this season. Baggerly (830 yards rushing, four TDs) and Haney (624 yards rushing, five TDs) are the biggest threats on the ground for Holland, which last week got four TDs from Pursche — including two of Cantu’s scoring throws. The Hornets, who boast the area’s best run defense, yielding 106 yards rushing per game, will try to contain Shelbyville’s dual attack of Standley (935 yards passing; 1,037 yards rushing) and Cartwright (1,506 yards rushing, 18 TDs).

— Class 2A Division II —


Davenport Stadium, San Antonio

Records: Granger Lions 10-0; Yorktown Wildcats 8-3

Last week: Granger 41, Miles 10; Yorktown 62, Sabinal 20

Winner gets: Burton or Bruni

Lions to watch: QB Johnny Ryder, RB/LB Donnie Cantwell, RB/LB DJ McClelland, RB/LB Truvante Fisher, OL/DL Javion Faulkner, LB Tripp Wilkie.

Wildcats to watch: QB Drew Alexander, RB/LB Gabe Latta, WR/DB Kalen Barefield, WR/RB/LB De’Quan Clay, OL/DL Ethan Pompa.

Note: This area-round matchup pits Granger’s stingy defense against Yorktown’s potent offense. The Wildcats average 42.1 points per game with an attack headlined by Alexander (2,536 yards passing, 26 TDs), Barefield (60 catches, 1,197 yards, 15 TDs), Latta (678 yards rushing, nine TDs) and Clay (32 receptions, 625 yards, five TDs). They face a Lions defense that limits opponents to an area-low 205.1 yards and 12.8 points per game. If its defense can contain Yorktown’s playmakers, Granger will lean on Ryder (1,123 yards, 14 TDs passing; 682 yards, 12 TDs rushing), McClelland (716 yards rushing, eight TDs; 428 yards, four TDs receiving) and Cantwell (717 yards rushing, 10 TDs) to produce enough points to propel the Lions into the third round.

Saturday’s Game

— TAPPS Six-man Division II —


5 p.m. Saturday, at Bryan Brazos Christian

Records: Holy Trinity Celtics 6-5; Covenant Cougars 10-1

Last week: Holy Trinity 64, San Antonio Castle Hills 52; Covenant 52, Kerrville Our Lady of the Hills 0

Winner gets: Bryan Allen or Marble Falls Faith

Celtics to watch: RB/WR Zaylin Blackwood, QB Jace Martin, OL Trent Lockhart, DL/FB David Thang, LB Nicholas Estrada, RB Christian Demapan, WR Neri Navarro.

Cougars to watch: RB/LB Kade Houston.

Note: A year after earning the first postseason win in program history, Holy Trinity Catholic added a second playoff victory last week, when Blackwood (771 yards rushing, 14 TDs; 415 yards receiving, eight TDs) accounted for five touchdowns and Martin (138-of-226, 1,802 yards, 28 TDs) threw for six TDs. After missing a handful of key players down the stretch in the regular season, including Blackwood and leading tackler Estrada, the Celtics got those players back just in time for the playoffs and carry some momentum after winning three of their last four games. Thang (814 yards rushing, four TDs), who filled in nicely when Blackwood was absent, also provides depth in the backfield. Covenant notched a mercy-rule win that ended at halftime last week. Houston is the Cougars’ best player on both sides of the ball.