Keller Fossil Ridge Holds off Birdville

Thursday night all eyes were on Fossil Ridge DE and Oklahoma commit DE R.J. Washington (pictured) and Birdville QB and Texas A&M commit Tommy Dorman, however it was the role players for Keller Fossil Ridge who stepped up to lead the Panthers to a 23-20 win.

NORTH RICHLAND HILLS-For the second season in a row the Keller Fossil Ridge Panthers (9-1, 6-0) knocked off the Birdville Hawks (8-1, 5-1) in Week 10 to not only win the District 6-4A title, but the Panthers also ended Birdville's dream of an unbeaten season as KFR knocked off BHS 23-20 on Thursday night at the Birdville Fine Arts Athletic Complex. . Fossil Ridge QB John Killion tossed three touchdown passes to lead the Panthers offense as two of those touchdown passes went to Rico Minor.

The first half was a defensive struggle as neither team was able to muster much of an offensive attack. Birdville had a lot of trouble containing the stout KFR defensive line led by R.J. Washington. Keller Fossil Ridge would move three times inside the Birdville 30 but they only came away with three points on a 46 yard Chris Boswell field goal. The Birdville defense would recover two Panther fumbles to turn away any other Keller Fossil Ridge scoring chances and KFR only held a 3-0 lead heading into the locker room.

Birdville started the second half with another big defensive play as DB Cole Wilson picked off an errant John Killion pass to set the Hawks up in KFR territory, two plays later Koko Udoka would cash in the turnover as he'd score on a one yard run to give the Hawks a 7-3 lead. Fossil Ridge however had an answer as the Panther despite a couple of silly penalties would get a big play as Rico Minor would score on a 30 yard screen pass from Killion to give the Panthers the lead back at 9-7 as the PAT was blocked. After forcing a Birdville punt the Panthers would extend the lead early in the fourth quarter as Minor scored on a 42 yard touchdown reception from Killion to make it 16-7 Keller Fossil Ridge. Birdville would be up to task to keep things interesting as Tommy Dorman would lead the Hawks down the field with a nice mix of run and pass and Jorge Acevedo would cap the drive with a one yard scoring run on a 4th and goal play to cut the Panthers lead to 16-14. Birdville needing a stop on the defensive side of the ball was unable to come up with it as Fossil Ridge marched right back down the field to clinch the game as Jordan Shea caught a 28 yard touchdown pass from Killion to put the Panthers up 23-14 with less than three minutes left. Birdville would manage a drive to get things close as Dorman hooked up with Clarke Renfro for a 22 yard scoring strike to cut the lead to 23-20 with 29 seconds left in the game, BHS would be unable to recover the onside kick and Keller Fossil Ridge would escape with a 23-20 win. The Panthers will head into bi-district play next week as they take on Denton Ryan while Birdville will matchup with the loser of tomorrow nights game between Wichita Falls and Wichita Falls Rider.

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