PLAYOFF PREVIEW: Local teams begin post season journeys

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Stephenville sophomore Easton Jones is one of several local quarterbacks making their first playoff starts tonight. || TheFlashToday.com photos by BRAD KEITH

By BRAD KEITH

TheFlashToday.com

STEPHENVILLE (November 13, 2015) — Stephenville, Dublin, Hico, De Leon, Stephenville FAITH and Santo all begin state playoff action this evening. Here’s a list of local games followed by five things to know about the bi-district round:

THURSDAY:

Region III-1A-Division I (Bi-District)

Gordon 52, Bryson 34 (Gordon 11-0; Bryson 6-5)


FRIDAY:

Region I-4A Division I Bi-District

Stephenville (3-6) vs. Decatur (9-1)

7:30 p.m. at Bearcat Stadium in Aledo


Region III-3A Division II Bi-District

Dublin (4-6) vs. Blooming Grove (7-3)

7:30 p.m. at Burleson Stadium


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Region II-2A Division I Bi-District

Hico (4-6) vs. Bosqueville (6-4)

7:30 p.m. at Rocket Stadium in Robinson


Region II-2A Division I Bi-District

De Leon (3-7) vs. Crawford (10-0)

7:30 p.m. at Higgins-Blakeney Field in Granbury


Region II-2A Division II Bi-District

Santo (7-3) vs. Hamlin (6-4)

7:30 p.m. at Wilford Moore Stadium in Abilene


There is also a game in Stephenville this evening:

Region I-3A Division I Bi-District

Clyde (8-2) vs. Bowie (5-5)

7:30 p.m. at Tarleton Memorial Stadium


Playoff bullet points:

1. First round has been good to Stephenville

Stephenville has won 10 consecutive bi-district playoffs, last falling in the opening round in 2004. The Yellow Jackets are in the post season for the 12th consecutive year and the 26th time in 27 years.

2. Rematch of a classic

Stephenville used a halfback pass to score the winning points in a 66-64 triple overtime thriller over Decatur in the same round last year. The Yellow Jackets erased a 10-point deficit over the final minutes of regulation.

3. Dublin is back again

These Lions didn’t need GPS to find the playoffs like last year’s group that made it for the first time in 11 years. Now they’re in consecutive post seasons for the first time since 1963 and ’64, but getting past the first round in consecutive years for the first time in school history won’t be easy.

Dublin needs to find some early offense after failing to score in the first half of each of its last two losses. The other key for the Lions – stopping Blooming Grove running back Juanya Pyburn, a load at 6-2, 230, who has rushed for 1,659 yards and 21 touchdowns according to the Corsicana Daily Sun.

4. Nothing new for Hico

Injuries and a brutal pre-district schedule made the regular season tough on Hico, but the Tigers are in a familiar position. In fact, they have been in as many post season games the last two years – seven – as Stephenville. With a playoff matchup that looks like a tossup on paper, playoff experience could be what pushes the Tigers past Bosqueville.

5. QB’s Making First Starts

Each local team playing tonight has a quarterback making his first playoff start at that position. Sophomore Easton Jones is at the controls in Stephenville and junior Brady Moore in Dublin. They rose by natural succession, while upstart freshman Kevin Yeager has become the guy in De Leon and converted running back Blake Hyles is taking snaps because of injuries in Hico. Even for Stephenville FAITH, veteran Joey Braun had Shadd Cole taking snaps in recent years.


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