One of the most anticipated matches of the year for Wylie is the Hebron game – week 0. The previous two seasons Hebron has crawled away with the win. 2006: 23-20, and 2007: 42-35. Last years star was Chris Givens (Wake Forest) as he ran for 247 yards and 4 touchdowns. Wylie returns more starters than Hebron. However, more returning starters does not always translate into a superior team.
Sitting in the Wylie crowd was well-known 6th man for the Dallas Mavericks, shooting guard Jason "Jet" Terry. It was not known what his affiliation was with Wylie, or if he was just trying to keep on the down-low. A possible scenario pits him as a Hebron fan trying to blend in with the Wylie crowd to keep Hebron fanatics, who knew he could be there, from spotting him.
At approx. 7:30PM central standard time, football season arrived for the Wylie Pirates and Hebron Hawks. Fans sweltered in the August heat, lights on the scoreboard were flashing for the very first time, and cheerleaders trotted onto the field followed by the drill teams making a pathway for the football players who were about to step onto the field for their first game of the season. As the teams walked on to the field, "Band horns up" was heard throughout the stadium. Texas Fight played into the night, as Wylie would go on to defeat Hebron for the first time in 4 years.
On the field, 22 players positioned themselves on the 100 yard gridiron in preparation for the opening kickoff. Wylie's kicker, Zac Ohannesian boomed the kick out of the end zone. Hebron started out slow completing 0 passes and rushing for 5 yards on their first 3-and-out drive of the 2008 season. On 4th down, Hebron punted to the Wylie 40, where the punt was muffed by Menchaca. However, he would fall on his own fumble.
Wylie's first drive started out about the same as Hebron. The only difference was the conversion on 3rd and 6 (Jerod Monk scramble), and converting on four 3rd downs on their first drive, leading to a 4th and goal inches from the goal line. Wylie lined up in the shotgun. However, Monk's momentum wasn't enough to guide him into 6-point land, turning the ball over on downs.
Hebron's second possession will probably be their longest drive of the season, and we had not even played a quarter yet. Hebron methodically marched 98 yards converting on 3 3rd downs. On 1st and 10 on the 22 yard line, Justin Iwugi launched a strike to WR Phillip Mitchell for 6 points. Hebron took the lead 7-0 after Blake Denton's point after attempt was good.
After a good start to Wylie's next possession, Coach Purcell called a flea-flicker. Knott ran 5 yards past the line of scrimmage before attempting to lateral back to the QB. The lateral however would never make it back to Monk and Hebron opportunistically fell on it. Hebron would then go 3-and-out for the second time. Wylie would return the favor with a 3-and-out of their own.
With a 7-0 lead, Hebron would need to score again if they hoped for a win. Their next drive consisted of 9 plays for 80 yards. The final play made the refs look silly as they originally ruled that Hebron was down about 6 inches from the goal line. A Hebron player would then argue with the ref drawing a penalty of the 15 yard variety. After the flag was thrown, the stadium P.A. announcer stated that Hebron had scored, and had taken a 13-0 lead. At that point the refs looked confusingly at each other, and one signaled touchdown. Denton's PAT gave Hebron a 14-0.
The score would remain that until the 3rd quarter. The bands had played their first shows of the 2008 season, and the drill teams had done their dance. Wylie opted to receive, as they had differed until the second half after winning the coin toss to begin the game. After the return set up Wylie on the 27 yard line, it would look as if they were going to go 3-and-out. However, they would line up in the swinging gate. Monk carried the ball to the left, and Jones ran underneath him. Monk gently tossed the ball to Jones on the option and carried forward for 3 yards and the 1st down. 4th down would come up once more on the drive, but Monk was able to find Colby Harper for the first down as he beat the corner to the inside. Monk followed up by rushing the ball in for a 2 yard TD on 1st and goal. That cut Hebron's lead down by 7 points making it 14-7.
2 possessions later, Wylie was at it again. They had begun their drive on their own 7 yard line. While moving the ball 93 yards wasn't impossible, it was not going to be the easiest way to get down field. It took Wylie 13 plays before Monk was able to find Colby Harped in the middle of the end zone exploiting the cover 2 defense thrown out there by Hebron. Wylie had just tied the game at 14 all. The possible upset was now within reach.
Hebron's follow-up drive started out well as the pass was completed for a 14 yard catch on 2nd and 9. However, 4 plays later Hebron would have to punt. The punt was a horrible kick traveling only 13 yards and giving Wylie good starting field position on a drive that could set them up for the win.
Wylie began the drive with a 1 yard pass to Lambert. They followed it up with a 4 yard run to Jones, and an incomplete (tipped) pass to Harper. On 4th down Monk was able to use his strength to muscle the ball forward 5 yards for the 1st down. On 3rd down, Hebron and Wylie would both commit 15 yard penalties. Holding on Wylie and a personal foul – face mask was called on Hebron. Penalties would offset leaving Wylie to convert a 3rd and 7. The keeper would go for 3 yards. On 4th and 4 Lambert took the handoff from Monk and swept it around the tackles for a pick up of 6 and a 1st down. At this point Wylie had made their way down to the 22 yard line. Lambert would get the carry one more time on 1st and 10, carrying it out to the 9 yard line. Noah Cheshier would then pummel his way through the defensive line for a 7 yard gain. Again, Wylie had 1st and goal inside the 2 yard line. 2 plays later, Monk took the option in for 6 points. After the PAT, Wylie had taken a 21-14 lead. Each team would have a few more possessions. But none would go the way the Hawks planned.
Hebron: Justin Iwuji, 16-21-1-187
Wylie: Jerod Monk, 12-21-0-89
Hebron: Darius Staten, 14-70
Wylie: Nick Knott, 18-113
Hebron: Tyshon Nobles, 3-68
Wylie: Colby Harper, 10-82