Highland Park Emphatically Advances

The Highland Park Scots advance to the Class 4A Division II State Championship game with a 42-13 drubbing of previously unbeaten Everman on Saturday afternoon.

MESQUITE- Highland Park (15-0) put any doubts as to their legitimacy to rest on Saturday afternoon as they throttled the Everman Bulldogs (14-1) 42-13 in the Class 4A Division II State Semi-Finals on Saturday afternoon at Memorial Stadium. The story of this game was told at the line of scrimmage as the Scots not only ran for 259 yards but the Scots defensive line totally controlled Everman's offensive line as they held the Everman ground game to 79 yards. HPHS RB Michael Thatcher was the key cog for the Highland Park ground game as he torched the Everman defense for 133 yards rushing and 4 touchdowns, while WR Seth Gardner was deadly in the passing game with 5 receptions for 140 yards and a touchdown.

Everman's opening possession was a precursor of things to come on this cold afternoon as after going three and out, the Bulldogs were forced to punt but a bad snap went over Deantre Harlan's head and Harlan was tackled at the 20 yard line. Highland Park quickly took advantage of the short field scoring on 3 plays as Michael Thatcher scored on a four yard run to put the Scots up 7-0. After a good kickoff return into Scots territory by Devin Woods, the Bulldogs struck as Sedrick Harris scored on a 43 yard touchdown run but the PAT hit the upright and the Scots led 7-6. Highland Park would go up 14-6 on their next drive as the Scots marched 69 yards as QB Winston Gamso scored on a one yard run. Everman early in the second quarter would have another special teams gaffe as Chris Franklin inexplicably tried to field a short punt and he never got control of the loose ball and the Scots would jump on the ball at the Everman 40. Thatcher would cap the drive with his second touchdown run from three yards out and Highland Park led 21-6. Everman would have an answer as they pulled to 21-13 as Chris Franklin hauled in a 37 yard touchdown pass from Harris late in the third quarter. The Bulldogs looked to have momentum as they had Highland Park in a 3rd and 18 situation in their own territory but WR Seth Gardner would catch an out route for what looked to be a 20 yard gain but after a broken tackle Gardner streaked down the sidelines for a 66 yard touchdown reception and Highland Park held a 28-13 which would be the score at the half.

In the second half Highland Park put the game out of reach as Thatcher scored on two touchdown runs to start the half on back to back possessions. It was a struggle the entire second half for the Everman offense to even get a first down as Highland Park's defense led by David Owens, Jamie Nolan, and Dan Samson left little doubt as to who the superior opponent was on Saturday. Next week Highland Park will take on Lake Travis in the Class 4A Division II State Championship which will be played at Floyd Casey Stadium on the campus of Baylor University.

1 2 3 4 T

Highland Park 14 14 14 0 42

Everman 6 7 0 0 13

Highland Park

Passing

Number Name Comp Att Yards TD INT

8 Winston Gamso 7 9 163 1 1

6 Dutch Crews 1 3 1 0 0

Rushing

Number Name Att Yds TD

24 Michael Thatcher 16 133 4

8 Winston Gamso 14 60 1

22 Craig Archibald 2 8 0

6 Dutch Crews 7 40 0

32 Hayden Molberg 6 4 0

9 Wes Van Dyk 4 24 0

18 Austin Mai 1 -10 0

Recieving

Number Name Rec Yds TD

86 Seth Gardner 5 140 1

24 Michael Thatcher 3 24 0

Everman

Passing

Number Name Comp Att Yds TD INT

15 Sedrick Harris 4 18 99 1 0

Rushing

Number Name Att Yds TD

30 Clarence Jennings 9 27 0

8 Ryan Smith 6 4 0

15 Sedrick Harris 10 39 1

32 Devin Woods 1 9 0

Recieving

Number Name Rec Yds TD

11 Marcus McAdoo 1 11 0

3 Chris Franklin 3 88 1


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