Watch out Texas, here come the Lions.
The Alpha Omega Academy Lions stormed through their regular-season finale Saturday, beating the Northeast Christian Warriors 55-6 and loudly pronouncing their intentions for their first trip to the TAPPS Division I six-man state football playoffs.
“We’ve got to take it up another notch,” running back Chris Shirley said after rushing for 177 yards and four touchdowns. “We know that it’s going to get harder each time we go up. It’s serious business and we want to go all the way.”
Though the Lions clinched the TAPPS Division I District 5 championship last week, they knew they had to play their hearts out in order to clinch home-field advantage in the first round of the playoffs.
The Lions did just that as they blew by Northeast Christian to finish 5-0 in District 5 play.
Playing at home later this week will be a huge advantage. The Lions host Kerrville Our Lady of the Hills on Saturday afternoon.
“We knew that this game was just as important as any of the other ones,” Shirley said after the Lions finished off the Warriors in the first half. “We wanted to come out and finish it as fast as we could.”
Because AOA was ahead by more than 45 points, the game was called at halftime and the Lions mildly celebrated another convincing victory.
The Lions are 4-1 when playing in their own backyard this season. During that span, they have outscored their opponents 206-72.
Saturday’s win also was the third one Alpha Omega has won by the mercy rule.
“We had to be ready for anything and it just turned out that it was a little more lopsided than we maybe hoped,” Lions coach Jeff Norris said. “We executed fairly well and I thought our starting defense was fairly solid.
“Overall, I’m happy because we’re district champs.”
The Lions held the Warriors to a mere 106 yards of total offense. Dakota Reeves played a monster game as he recorded two tackles for losses and dominated the line of scrimmage for two quarters.
It didn’t take long for the Lions to get on the board after AOA’s defense forced a three-and-out on the Warriors’ 25 yard line.
Running back Garrett Garrison ran for 18 yards into the red zone. On the next play, quarterback Marco Pardo scored on a 7-yard run. Losha Thompson converted his first of six 2-point conversion kicks that made it 8-0.
That was just the beginning.
Shirley broke through an open seam that was created by Pardo’s block and went 37-yards for a touchdown that capped a three-play, 43-yard drive. Shirley later intercepted a pass and returned it for a 37-yard touchdown. Thompson’s 2-point conversion increased it to 24-0.
Shirley also returned a punt 37 yards for another score to increase the lead to 32-0.
The Lions added three more scores on a touchdown run by Shirley (40 yards), Garrison (2 yards) and a fumble recovery in the end zone by senior Johnathan Osborne.
With their goals for the regular season accomplished, the Lions know that they have to up their game if they want to make it far in the playoffs.
Alpha Omega players pumped about first trip to state football playoffs
Watch out Texas, here come the Lions.
Future Hornets take the field
Never before has there been Stars of Huntsville Softball Camp, and it’s not every day that Huntsville’s youth softball players have an opportunity to learn the game’s fundamentals from the town’s most experienced players and coaches.
On Monday, nearly 25 campers took the field at Kate Barr Ross Park and were instructed by Huntsville Hornets softball head coach Rick Burns and several members of his team. The players, coaches and campers battled through the heat to have a successful day that saw many of the campers receive one-one-one instruction.
SHSU’s Ridings honored by Southland Conference
Longtime Sam Houston State sports information director Paul Ridings has been named the 2014 recipient of the Southland Conference’s Louis Bonnette Sports Media Award.
The honor will be presented during the Southland’s Football Media Day luncheon July 23 at L’auberge Resort in Lake Charles, La.
Huntsville Heat win tourney title
The Huntsville Heat played in Alvin over the weekend in a benefit tournament that drew 52 teams.
The benefit tournament was hosted by the Alvin Girls Softball Association for one of their own Alvin Bayou Babes players, Natalie Mota, who was recently diagnosed with lymphoma.
Ever since he was drafted in the 23rd round in 2010 by the Minnesota Twins, former Trinity Tiger and Sam Houston State Bearkat pitcher Dallas Gallant has been on the road to the majors.
Despite having to undergo two surgeries on his elbow, Gallant continues to do what he needs to in the minor leagues to take the next step in his career.
Running down under
The roads were closed and 3,834 runners were lined up preparing to try and catch Huntsville High School cross-country star Blake Thomason as she ran down the Gold Coast of Australia.
The Huntsville High School sophomore cross-country and track and field star is used to competing against runners from different parts of the country. But this time, Thomason took her talents to the world stage.
BEARKAT BASEBALL — Atwood returning for senior season with Kats
Good news arrived last week for Bearkats baseball and new head coach Matt Deggs.
Center fielder Colt Atwood will be back in uniform for Sam Houston State next spring.
Atwood was selected in the 38th round of the 2014 First-Year Player Draft by the Oakland Athletics on June 8.
Huntsville Steppers shine in track meet
Each weekday, the Huntsville Steppers head to practice at Huntsville High School and run through the hot summer heat.
It’s the work they’ve done when the spotlight isn’t on them that helped the team excel July 11 and 12 at Baylor University in Waco in a regional meet to qualify for the Texas Amateur Athletic Federation’s Games of Texas. The Steppers earned 16 medals and qualified 12 runners for the TAAF’s Games of Texas, set for July 31- Aug. 4 at Texas A&M University.
Making dreams come true
Chris Spikes was covered. The Jasper High School wide receiver had a cornerback draped all over him during one-on-one drills at Friday’s Elite Kat Football Camp at Bowers Stadium.
But with one leap, Spikes snatched the ball out of the air and touched his feet in the end zone, causing a stir among the players standing along the sideline. Spikes had no idea that he had also grabbed himself a Division I scholarship offer from Sam Houston State.
RODEO INSIDER: Calgary Stampede shows how it's done
In the world of pro rodeo, the Calgary Stampede provides a great model for other events to follow.It’s the ultimate lucrative, all-star, outdoor summer rodeo. The 2014 edition, which began July 4, and concluded Sunday, featured a field of 20 credentialed riders in each event, including 19-time Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association world champion Trevor Brazile, 2004 Professional Bull Riders world champion Mike Lee and three-time world bareback riding champ Kaycee Feild.
Building for the future
Jordan Kader didn’t do much wrestling toward the end of the first day of the Huntsville Hornets Wrestling Camp on Monday.
As the campers practiced sit-outs and body rolls, Kader, who is a rising senior at Huntsville High School and has twice wrestled in the UIL state tournament, kept a watchful eye over youngsters Isabell Sournell and Taryn Cahill. She patiently instructed the duo of future Hornets, using her three years of experience to guide them through a myriad of drills.
- More Sports Headlines
- Future Hornets take the field