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.
SAM HOUSTON STATE BASKETBALL — Marching onto Katy
The Bearkats are close to playing how they want following an 80-61 victory against New Orleans on Saturday to end the regular season.
Sam Houston State (21-9 overall, 13-5 Southland) finished in third place and will be the No. 3 seed in this week’s Southland Conference tournament. The Kats will face the winner of No. 6 seed Oral Roberts and No. 7 seed McNeese State on Thursday night at the Merrell Center in Katy.
SAM HOUSTON STATE BASEBALL — Just enough to win
The Bearkats got just enough offense and plenty of sharp pitching on Saturday.
That was enough to top Cal State Northridge 2-1 and also clinch the weekend series.
SAM HOUSTON STATE SOFTBALL — Kats split Southland opener against McNeese
The Sam Houston State softball team managed to split its doubleheader after dropping the Southland Conference season opener with McNeese State at the Bearkat Softball Complex on Saturday.
The Bearkats lost the first game 4-2, but rebounded with a 3-2 victory against the Cowgirls.
SHSU WOMEN'S BASKETBALL — Bearkats cruise to 87-56 victory in season finale against New Orleans
Seniors Jasmine Johnson and Nyha Carter completed their Sam Houston State women’s basketball careers by leading the Bearkats to an 87-56 victory over New Orleans on Saturday afternoon.
Sam Houston State cowboys, alumni hope for ‘big bucks’ at RodeoHouston
Country music legend Waylon Jennings may have gotten it wrong. Sometimes it’s great to let babies grow up to be cowboys, especially if one is a parent of the cowboy and cowgirl talent at Sam Houston State University.
For the next few weeks, the spotlight will be on bareback riders Taylor Price and Bill Tutor, bull rider Trey Benton III and tie-down roper Caleb Smidt, all students or recent graduates of Sam Houston State’s rodeo team who are competing at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo.
- LADY HORNETS SOFTBALL — Huntsville beats Caney Creek 6-2
- DISTRICT CHAMPS
HUNTSVILLE POWERLIFTING — Blount, Johnson bring home gold, advance to state meet
Huntsville high school junior Parker Blount and sophomore Des Johnson are moving onto the state powerlifting meet. Both Blount and Johnson took first in their respective weight classes at the boys regional powerlifting meet on Saturday in Lindale.
HUNTSVILLE SOCCER — Fitting home finale
The Huntsville girls soccer team shined in their final home game of the season with a 3-0 victory against Porter.
HUNTSVILLE BASEBALL — Hornets fall to Magnolia
The Hornets are still trying to get out of their own way. So far this season, Huntsville’s baseball team has allowed self-inflicted wounds to help render them winless three games into the district schedule.
A 14-9 loss to Magnolia on Friday night, in which Huntsville committed five errors, is the latest example of the Hornets beating themselves.
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- SAM HOUSTON STATE BASKETBALL — Marching onto Katy