Tigers finish regular season undefeated

Final score against Pine Tree 38-3


Lauren Maynard

Cheer escorts Slyder Welch (left) and Tye Shelton (right) celebrate a touchdown by Texas High’s Quan Hampton. Hampton broke a single season reception record with 66 catches for the 2016 season.

Story by Celeste Anderson and Connor Brooks

The Texas High Tigers faced off against the Pine Tree Pirates in the last district game tonight at Tiger Stadium at Grim Park. The final score was Texas 38-3, making the Tigers undefeated in district play with a 10-0 record for the first time since 2006.

“A state championship is all I need under my belt. Everything else is great. I feel absolutely terrific,” Pearson said. “It’s everything I’ve dreamed of since I’ve been in high school, and I just want [our record] to be 16-0 now.”

Pine Tree won the toss, but after throwing two incomplete passes, Texas High cornerback D.T. Hunter intercepted a pass and ran 37 yards into the end zone, scoring the first touchdown of the night 17 seconds into the first quarter.

Quarterback Cade Pearson made a series of offensive passes to wide receiver Quan Hampton, which gained the Tigers 68 yards and landed them on the Pirate 5-yard line. Texas High was unable to get the ball in the endzone, and kicker Isidro Hernandez made a 23-yard field goal. This made the score Texas High 10-0 at the end of the first quarter.

With 8:38 left in the second quarter, Pearson passed the ball to wide receiver Tevailance Hunt for a touchdown. The PAT was good, putting Texas up 17-0. Texas High then had a four-play drive that ended with a pass from Pearson to Hampton for a 28-yard touchdown play. The first half ended with the Tigers up 24-0.

After starting the third quarter with a series of offensive plays, Texas scored a touchdown with a pass from Pearson to Hunt from the 11-yard line, making the score 31-0 with 9:34 left in the quarter.

Hunter forced the Pirates to punt when he sacked Pine Tree quarterback Wade Seidel, putting them back 13 yards on a fourth down.

With a little over seven minutes in the third quarter, the second string was entered into the game. After bringing the ball up the field for a few plays, the Tigers landed on the 1-yard line, and were able to push themselves through for a touchdown. The score was 38-0 at the end of the third quarter.

With 7:04 left on the clock, the Pirates were on fourth down and were forced to punt a field goal. The field goal was good, resulting in the first and last points scored by Pine Tree all night. The game wrapped up with a final score of 38-3, making Texas High undefeated district champions.

“There are teams all over the country who don’t win 10 games a year, and it’s the fifth time in Texas High history we’ve done it,” head coach Barry Norton said. “It’s just a tremendous feeling. The kids have put so much work in, dating back to December. This is something they’ll be able to talk about forever.”

In addition to ending the season undefeated, Hampton made Texas High history when he broke Cobi Hamilton’s record with a total of 66 receptions.

“My next goal is to break Joe Anderson’s yards record of 1,195,” Hampton said. “If it wasn’t for my quarterback, that goal wouldn’t have been accomplished. Hard work definitely pays off in the long run.”

The team will compete in their first playoff game next week in Royse City against West Mesquite. The coaches and players are determined to advance to the state level.

“We’ve won it all before, so we know what it takes to get [to state],” Norton said. “You have to play your best every time you go out there. If we’ll play like we’re capable of then we’ll win next Friday night.”

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