Tigers notch win over Liberty-Eylau
Texas High's first-year head coach Gerry Stanford has preached improvement every day and every week, and that showed Friday against LibertyEylau as the Tigers notched their initial win of the season.
Texas High had 403 yards of total offense, rushing for 198 and 205 through the air, and the THS defense halted the Leopard running attack during the Tigers' 37-23 victory at Tiger Stadium in Grim Park.
Both teams entered 0-2 on the season, and the Tigers were averaging just 3.5 points per game in losses to Bishop Lynch and Arkansas High.
“The kids' mental character and leadership has been phenomenal,” Stanford said. “We made a few adjustments; Liberty-Eylau showed us some things defensively, that we hadn't seen them do.
“We made some adjustments to our game plan, but ultimately it was just our kids. They got out there and played their tails off, played hard every snap, and we improved in so many ways tonight.”
Junior quarterback Coltin Clack paced the Texas High offense with 109 yards rushing and connecting on 17 of 23 passes for 205 yards, four touchdowns and no interceptions. Clack also ran 5 yards for a touchdown after Elias Thurman's 46-yard interception return.
Thurman finished with two picks, and the Tigers had three takeaways.
Decorian Phillips ran for 58 yards and a score for the Leopards and completed 23 of 36 passes for 277 yards and a 63-yard score to Mahleik Darty.
“We'll look at what we didn't do well and work to improve in those areas,” Leopard coach Steve Wells said. “We'll come back Monday and get to work, put this one behind us and get ready for Atlanta, another tough opponent.
“We have to play every play to the best of our ability, and hopefully we'll rebound next week.”
Tevailance Hunt had two touchdown receptions—originally it was reported that Jaqualen Brown had a TD catch
for Texas High.
Hunt finished with 91 yards on seven grabs. Brown caught three for 60 yards, and Chris Lyles (11 yards) and Vonderic Stanley (30) yards also had scoring catches.
Darty had six catches for 106 yards and his TD for the Leopards, and El-Amin Greer had seven grabs for 90 yards, Cedric Dickerson added a 1-yard TD run late in the third quarter to cut the deficit to 30-23.
The Tigers had 66 offensive snaps, and Liberty-Eylau 63. The Leopards finished with 363 yards of total offense but lost a fumble going in inside the 3 to go along with Thurman's two interceptions.
Texas High have their final District 16-5A tuneup at Kilgore next week, and Liberty-Eylau travels to Atlanta to wrap up a 3-game road trip.
n Liberty-Eylau defensive end Gerald Webster snatches Texas High running back Chris Sutton to make the stop during Friday night's game at Tiger Stadium. THS got the first win of the season beating the Leopards, 37-23.