By BRAD KEITH
EVERMAN (September 9, 2016) — Stephenville came charging back, but it was too little, too late in a 31-24 loss at Everman Friday night.
The Bulldogs, on the strength of 301 yards and three touchdowns by Kenneth Johnson, built a 31-10 lead midway through the third quarter, but Stephenville wouldn’t go away.
Easton Jones connected with Cameron Frazier for a 29-yard touchdown on a fourth-down pass that trimmed the deficit to 31-17, then the Yellow Jackets recovered an onside kick. Krece Nowak scampered to the Everman one, and three quarterback sneaks by Jones muscled the ball across the goal line with 1:14 remaining.
Everman made a fair catch when Stephenville pooched a second onside kick, and one first down later the Bulldogs took a knee to end the game and beat Stephenville for the first time since a state quarterfinal in 2008.
The Yellow Jackets, 0-3 for the first time since 1988, are home the next two weeks for their Heart of Gold game against Decatur and homecoming against Graham.
Stephenville moved the ball consistently, but finishing drives was another story. Nine times the Jackets crossed the 50, and they picked up a first down on all but two drives. One of those ended in an interception that was returned for a Bulldog touchdown to open up a 24-3 lead just before halftime.
Everman scored the first 10 points before a 40-yard field goal by Jake Gillispie, then Everman scored the final 14 points of the half, the last seven of those on the pick six that joined a Stephenville touchdown called back for a penalty as the biggest difference makers in the latest battle between the storied programs.
Jones passed for two scorers and rushed for one, the other one through the air going to Conner Schmutz to trim it to 24-10 in the third. The junior quarterback was 20-40 224 yards through the air, hitting Frazier five times for 102 yards and Schmutz six times for 61 yards.
Nowak rushed for 146 yards, 105 of that after halftime. The sophomore has topped the century mark in all three games.
Cole Pettit had an interception for Stephenville and Pacen Parker caused a fumble that was recovered for Dylan Garber.