Tigers sting back

Texas High gets second win in the season at first home game against Denison

Texas High’s Clayton Smith pursues Denison’s Asa Osborn in the second quarter of the home opener on Oct. 2, 2020. The Tigers defeated the Yellow Jackets 24-3 improving their record to 2-0.

Story by Caden Rainwater, Braden McKinnon, and Olivia Huckabee

The Tigers pulled off a big win at Grim Stadium by shutting down the Yellow Jacket’s run game. This limited them to only 103 rushing yards, propelling  the Tigers to a 24-3 win.

“We stopped their run game. They came into this game thinking they could run it down our throats, but we were more physical,” senior Clayton Smith said.

The Tiger defense opened the game up strong holding the Yellow Jackets to a quick three unsuccessful downs and a punt. The Yellow Jacket’s defense fired back with its own three and out. Both teams swapped field positions throughout the entire first quarter leaving the score at the end of the quarter 0-0.

“We’re looking good, I think we played the right spots defensively,”  Head Coach Gerry Stanford said. “We kind of settled in and started making some really big plays. We’re just going to continue to improve and get better.”

The Tigers offense kicked things into gear in the second quarter ending their first drive with a four-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Brayson McHenry to Smith.

Smith ended the Yellow Jacket’s hopes for a successful drive with a devastating sack, forcing a punt. Once the ball was returned to the Tigers, Braylon Stewart led the team down the field giving kicker Oscar Hernandez the chance to make a 33-yard field goal which put the Tigers up 10-0 at the half.

“We started slow but came out of the half and we just turned it on,” senior Rian Cellars said. “It was a good win for us and we’re looking forward to next week.”

Returning from halftime, the Tiger run-game continued eating away at the Yellow Jacket defense. After a 36-yard run by Stewart, running back Vontrey Anderson closed out the drive with a short one-yard touchdown. As the Yellow Jackets again could not respond, McHenry completed a 38-yard touchdown pass to junior Blake Rogers, making the score 24-0 at the end of the third quarter.

“I’ve felt like we have always had a really good stable of running backs, and they continue to get better and we continue to get better on the offensive line,” Stanford said.

The Tigers started slowly opening the fourth quarter with a muffed punt recovered by the Yellow Jackets. In an attempt to keep the visitors scoreless, Clayton Smith forced another three and out with his third sack of the game. Vontrey Anderson then fumbled on the following drive giving the Yellow Jackets a last-ditch effort to get on the board. As a common trend throughout the game continued, Denison’s offense couldn’t take advantage of a turnover leading them to squeak out a 27-yard field goal by opposing kicker Peyton Johnson. After an onside kick recovered by the Yellow Jackets, they still couldn’t get anything going, ending the game 24-3 with the Tigers on top.

“It was a good win for us tonight, we definitely proved a point,” Anderson said. “We’re going to keep working and get ready to win next week.”

Next week the Tigers will host the Forney Jackrabbits for the Texas High homecoming game scheduled for 7:30 at Grim Stadium.