Tigers lose to Bulldogs

Early Texas High lead not enough to hold off Kilgore


Rachel Lewis

Texas High quarterback Cade Pearson absorbs a hit by a Kilgore linebacker Sept. 18, 2015. The Tigers lost to the Bulldogs 21-17 for their first loss of the 2015 season.

Story by Alex Heo, sports editor

The Texas High Tigers suffered their first loss of the season on Sept.18 to the Kilgore Bulldogs. The Tigers built a 14-0 lead early in the game only to lose it in the second half.

“It was a ball game that we should’ve won,” head football coach Barry Norton said. “I thought they played harder than we did in the second half. We’ve got to provide our energy. I thought we were flat the whole ball game.”

The first quarter opened with a Bulldogs drive, but the Tigers defensive end Jacobi Brewer halted their drive when he recovered a fumble at Kilgore’s 40 yard line within one minute into the game. On Texas High’s’ first offensive play, the Tigers scored their their first touchdown on the first play of the game with a 40 yard pass from quarterback Cade Pearson to receiver Quan Hampton, resulting in the score 7-0, Texas High.

Both teams traded punts on their next drives. With four minutes left in the first quarter, defensive back Jerry Wrightner intercepted a pass from Kilgore’s quarterback Patrick Jackson at the Tiger’s 30 and returned it to Kilgore’s 29. Texas High’s J’kardi Witcher then scored the Tiger’s second touchdown after consecutive runs of 26 yards and 3 yards.

The first quarter concluded with a score of 14-0 in Texas High’s favor.

Two minutes into the second quarter, the Kilgore Bulldogs started to gain their footing. Bulldogs quarterback Patrick Jackson completed a 38 yard pass to wide receiver Jonathan Shepherd to bring the bulldogs to Texas High’s 12-yard line. Jackson then completed another pass to wide receiver Cole Wood in the end zone to put the Bulldogs on the scoreboard, 14-7.

“I feel like that we didn’t prepare hard enough, and that we got some people that don’t want to play, that is out here just to stand around here,” receiver Eric Sutton said. “We got to prepare harder and play hard as a team.”

The Tigers marched their way down the field after receiving the kickoff at their own 36.With the Tigers threatening to score, Bulldog defensive back Mateo Meraz intercepted a Pearson pass at Kilgore’s 2 yard line and returned it 98 yards for a touchdown, tying the score at 14-14.
Before halftime the Tigers scored again with a 14 yard field goal from kicker Ethan Montez. The first half concluded with a score of 17-14 in Texas High’s favor.

The third quarter was mostly stagnant as both teams traded drives ending with punts. Montez attempted a 19-yard field goal with two minutes left in the quarter, but missed left.

Three minutes into the fourth quarter, Kilgore seized their first lead of the game when Jackson caught the Tigers defense off guard and rushed for 25 yard touchdown on a quarterback keeper, bringing the score to 21-17.

“We didn’t stay hungry,” defensive back Chaz Davis said. “We felt like something was going to be handed to us.”

The Tigers faced a third and 16 situation with three minutes left in the game. However, Pearson’s pass to receiver Eric Sutton kept their drive alive and brought them to Kilgore’s 48. Two minutes later, the Tigers faced a 4th and 10 on Kilgore’s 32. Pearson’s pass attempt to receiver Tevailance Hunt was swatted away by Kilgore’s Devin Lawler, ending the Tigers’ hopes of a victory. The game ended with a Bulldog victory, 21-17

“I told the kids at halftime, I would rather lose a game and play as hard as we could and gave it everything we have than to win a game and not play hard,” Norton said. “I’m extremely disappointed.”

The Tigers will host Sulphur Springs next on Sept. 25 for the home opener.