Sports > Schools
Spartan Ops: Raccoons steal the show, win 42-7
BY Matthew Costa, Staff Writer
MESQUITE – Coming off a dramatic come-from-behind win last week against Highland Park, Frisco (9-3 overall, 6-1 in district 9-4A) kept their momentum alive in a 42-7 playoff win against Samuell (7-5 overall, 5-2 in district 12-4A).
Against the wind and the Spartan defense, Frisco faced a vital fourth-and-one with more than three minutes remaining in the second quarter, leading 14-7. With a typical punt formation lined up at their 33-yard line, junior back Matt Nollman received the ball and tricked the Samuell defense for a 19-yard gain on the play.
“Well, the wind was blowing pretty hard and we figured you’re not going to get much kicking into it,” said Vance Gibson, Frisco head coach. “If we could just keep the ball away from them, that’d be big. The score was just a bonus.
Frisco took care of the game from that point, moving the ball 48 yards in seven plays, finishing the drive with a Nollman run from 2 yards away to increase the lead, 21-7.
Nollman and senior Ben Cole had outstanding performances on the ground, leading the Raccoons with 154 and 121 yards, respectively, and four touchdowns combined.
“All of our running backs are great high school football players,” Gibson said. “They’re very unselfish. They work really well in pass protection and blocking for each other.”
Frisco dominated the first half on both sides of the ball, outgaining Samuell 267 to 91, including 232 yards rushing and 13 first downs for the Raccoons.
The formula stuck for Frisco in the second half, shutting the Spartans’ offense down, while the offense kept up the pressure with long drives and more scores.
Sophomore receiver Dayton Bush added his touchdown in the third quarter, while Cole rushed for his second score of the day on a 1-play, 39-yard burst early in the fourth quarter to increase the Frisco lead to 35-7 before one final touchdown by Mikel McCrory ended the scoring at 42-7.
Samuel began the scoring with a 72-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Kamron Jones to receiver Michael Sheffield, as the Spartans took an early 7-0 lead with six minutes to play in the first quarter.
“We came out a little flat and they hit us with a big play,” Gibson said. “We responded well though.”
Nollman did not let the Frisco offense sit idly by following the early deficit, as he ran five times on the ensuing drive for a total of 55 yards, including a 9-yard scoring play. The eight-play drive lasted more than three minutes as the Raccoons were able to even the game at 7-7.
Soon afterwards, senior defensive lineman Shane Roberson fought through the Spartans’ offensive line and recovered a fumbled handoff for his team, which quickly resulted in the Raccoons’ second touchdown, a 10-yard run by Cole.
With a 14-7 lead, the Raccoons may have been able to coast from that point forward, as their defense helped them hold Samuell to 90 total yards, and cruise to the finish line in a dominant 42-7 win in the Class 4A Division I playoffs.
“We’re happy with this result,” Gibson said. “We’ll just have to see what happens next.”
Frisco’s journey toward a state title will continue next week versus Tyler John Tyler. The two teams will square off in a 7:30 p.m. contest tonight at Eagle Stadium in Allen.