Lexington #1 !
Lexington defeated Rogers 35- 22 to claim the #1 spot from District 12-2A in a mighty battle Friday night. The win gives Lexington a bye in the first round of the playoffs. Rogers will play Axtell in McGregor in their first game of the playoffs.
Kogan Garrett led the Eagles to the victory, running for 230 yards and passing for 197. The rushing yardage resulted in four touchdowns for Lexington and the passing yardage resulted in another score.
The game opened with Lexington losing the coin flip, which is a rarity. Rogers chose to play defense first, deferring their choice until the second half. Lexington took the kickoff. Eriq Mitchell returned the ball to the 32 yard line. Garrett passed to Jason Washington for 24 yards on first down. Garrett rushed for seven yards and then passed to Josh Murray for 17 yards more, as things were really going good. An option play to the left was Lexington’s undoing. Garrett pitched the ball to A.J. Flot, but Rogers’ Dylan Mendoza got there the same time as the ball, resulting in a fumble and a Rogers recovery at the Rogers 25.
The vaunted Rogers offense took over, marching 75 yards on 10 plays to score. Cody Weir did the most damage, with a 45 yard scamper before being dragged down by Washington. Weir ended the drive with a one yard plunge, to give Rogers a 6-0 lead with 6:23 showing on the first quarter clock.
Lexington answered with one of the quickest two-play drives you will ever see. Mitchell fair caught the kickoff at the Lexington 40- yard line. On first down Garrett passed incomplete. On second down, Garrett hit Washington in stride for a 60-yard scoring strike. Garrett was able to find the receiver behind the good blocking of Will Holcomb, Chase Hibbeler, Kevin Johnson, Jacob Warner and Tommy Stegall. Zach Lay toed the PAT for a 7-6 Lexington lead. The two play drive took a total of 16 seconds off the clock.
Rogers had an answer to the Lexington score. Weir up the middle was their answer. Weir carried the ball on four of the six plays for 65 yards on the 60-yard drive. Rogers had a five yard penalty in the middle of the drive. Weir went the final 26 steps for the score. Ricky Campos ran a sweep for the PAT, putting Rogers ahead 14-7.
What followed could have been a death toll for Lexington. A pop up kickoff went unattended by Lexington and Rogers recovered at the Lexington 40 yard line. The Lexington defense bent, but did not break. They stopped Rogers on fourth down at the 14.
From there, Lexington embarked on an eight play 86-yard drive. A.J. Flot got things off to a good start with two carries for 11 yards. Garrett rushed for eight and passed to Murray for 10. Garrett then found Donnie Havard open on the right sideline for 27 yards. Garrett rushed for five on the next play. Garrett found a seam in the Rogers defense, as he scampered 24 yards for the score. The PAT kick sailed wide right, leaving Rogers ahead 14-13. That would be the halftime score.
Rogers took the second half kickoff after deferring at the coin toss. Rogers started at their 25 yard line. On third down, they surprised the Lexington defense with a play-action pass for 27 yards. Rogers’ drive stalled after the pass. Mitchell stopped Weir for no gain on a fourth and two. Lexington took over possession of the ball at the Rogers 37.
Garrett rushed for eight on first down to the Lexington 45. The next two plays gained nothing. Coach Holcomb did not even think about punting on fourth down. He called a play, resulting in a 55 yard touchdown run by Garrett. The pass failed on the PAT try. Lexington had moved into the lead 19-14.
Lexington forced Rogers into a mistake on the ensuing possession. Antonio Washington forced the pitch to take place too soon, and Josh Murray covered for Lexington after the pitch hit the ground on the Rogers 34. Lexington could do little with the turnover, giving the ball back to Rogers at their own 29. Rogers got a first down, and then got stopped by the Lexington defense on fourth down at the Rogers 47.
Lexington started their next drive with 57 seconds left in the third quarter. Seven plays later, Lexington was in the end zone. The big plays were a Garrett pass to Murray for 29 yards and a Garrett rush for 30, down to the one. Garrett then trotted into the end zone untouched for the score. Garrett also rushed for the twopoint PAT extending the Green Eagle lead to 27-14.
After a couple of possessions for each team, the defenses ruled until Mitchell forced a fumble that was recovered by Murray at the Rogers 44. Lexington then went on a Garrett drive. Eight Garrett carries and 56 yards later, the Lexington quarterback was in the end zone for the fourth time in the game. Garrett then passed to Havard for the two extra points, making the score 35-14.
Rogers scored a meaningless touchdown with 1:34 left in the game to close at 35-22.
Antonio Washington led the defensive charge with 21 tackles and a forced fumble. He made a couple of hard form tackles on kickoffs, discouraging the Rogers returners. Tyler Meyer also had a great night with 18 tackles. Murray had 15 tackles and an interception to go with the two fumble recoveries. Eriq Mitchell made 15 tackles and a quarterback pressure on a blitz. Oscar Sauceda made 10 tackles, a couple of which were touchdown-saving stops from behind. Todd Glass and Colt Sunvison had eight tackles and Will Holcomb had six stops in the championship game.
Because of their win, Lexington will enjoy a week off before entering the playoffs against the winner of the Frankston/New Waverly game, to be held Saturday night at 7:00 in Buffalo.