High School: Dallas Jesuit

11 area prospects taking stage at The Opening

July, 4, 2012
7/04/12
3:17
PM CT


Dallas Jesuit receiver Jake Oliver and Plano Prestonwood Christian linebacker Mike Mitchell are among the players to watch at The Opening in Beaverton, Ore., this week according to ESPN Recruiting writers Tom Luginbill and Craig Haubert.

Click here (Insider) to see their entire list of players to watch, including their comments about Oliver and Mitchell.

The Opening, which runs Thursday-Sunday, consists of drills, workouts and competitions for some of the nation's top football prospects. The Elite Lineman Challenge, the SPARQ Rating National Championship and the Nike 7ON comprise the main competitions.

Click here for ESPNHS.com writer Christopher Parish's preview of The Opening, which will be broadcast on ESPNU and streamed on WatchESPN Friday-Sunday night at 7 p.m. CT.

The following nine prospects from North Texas high schools are joining Oliver and Mitchell at The Opening:

LaQuvionte Gonzalez, Cedar Hill ATH
Dontre Wilson, DeSoto ATH
Jake Raulerson, Celina OT
A'Shawn Robinson, Fort Worth Arlington Heights DT
Torii Hunter Jr., Prosper WR
Eldridge Massington, West Mesquite WR
Kameron Miles, West Mesquite S
Ra'Shaad Samples, Dallas Skyline WR
Colin Spencer, Dallas Woodrow Wilson CB
Not much was guaranteed to Dallas Jesuit head coach Charles DeLong before the 2012 season.

Two seasons removed from a 5A state title, he faced the dread of losing some of his players to Academy soccer and then, at times, had to put five sophomores on the field.

Looking back, it worked out pretty well for DeLong.

He tallied his 500th career win in district play, separating him as a Dallas coaching legend. Those five sophomores held their own, along with the majority of veteran players returning from last season, to put Jesuit back in the regional tournament this weekend.

Working on Jesuit’s side is decent continuity from the previous two years, but that doesn’t grant DeLong any more confidence in a return to the state tournament with the parity that exists now that Academy players no longer play.

“I’m not downplaying anybody, but I don’t think there is a super-powerhouse team,” DeLong said. “I think every team out there, on any given day, could beat each other.”

Jesuit is the lone area team playing in the 5A Region II tournament at Round Rock’s Kelly Reeves Athletic Complex, paired against The Woodlands in Friday’s semifinal match. The winner of that game will play either Midland Lee or Austin Westlake in the region final.

Two teams represent the area in the Region I tournament -- Plano and Mansfield. Plano’s chance at a berth in the state tournament last season was crushed by Southlake Carroll, who would go on to claim the 5A title.

Mansfield was also knocked out by Carroll in the area round of the playoffs last season and has not advanced past the area round since 2007.

GIRLS

Plano West began its 2010-2011 campaign as the top team nationally out of the DFW area.

That momentum slowed through district play and came to a screeching halt when West saw its season end in bi-district to Coppell.

This year, West enters the regional tournament as one of the most battle-tested teams in the state, surviving playoff matches against nationally ranked Grapevine and Flower Mound.

West’s path to Georgetown in 2012 must go through El Paso Montwood in the regional semifinals. West would then face the winner of Arlington and Flower Mound Marcus.

Marcus is the highest nationally ranked team still alive in the playoffs, sitting at No. 3 in the Week 19 poll, but West isn’t too far behind at No. 6.

The only area team in the Region II tournament is Sachse, who has gradually improved its playoff run every season since 2008-2009 and would continue the trend with a regional semifinal win over Georgetown on Friday.
With the rich talent pool of boys soccer in the area traditionally on teams like Southlake Carroll, Coppell and the Plano schools, who would have thought District 9-5A would have two of the best teams, not only the area but in the country?

As expected, one team is 2010 5A state champion Dallas Jesuit, which enters the 5A playoffs as the ESPNHS Fab 50 No. 9 team in the nation with an 18-2 regular season record.

The other took many by surprise.

Richardson Berkner won the District 9-5A title and finished the regular season 18-1 and is ranked No. 3 in the nation, the highest of any Texas team.

“I didn’t see that they had that from the JV team last year,” Jesuit coach Charles DeLong said. "They kind of came out of nowhere.”

It’s Berkner’s first trip to the playoffs in six years with coach Juan Beracochea at the helm.

Knocking off defending 5A state champion Southlake Carroll in the fourth game of the season gave Berkner the confidence to claim that playoff berth and garner national attention during the journey.

Credit a large portion of the success to senior Jack Wolf, who leads Berkner in all-around scoring with 25 goals and six assists. His effort stuck out to DeLong and has been adopted by the rest of his teammates. Wolf, a National Honor Society member and Division I prospect, single-handedly won Berkner’s second game against Jesuit, scoring both of his team’s goals in the 2-0 win.

“He’s very athletic. Very determined and he’s got decent skills,” DeLong said. “He plays on a team that gives him appropriate service. It’s hard to score that many goals unless you have players around you that can pass you the ball at the right time and the right place and you can’t score that many goals unless you have something going for you as an individual. He’s a handful.”

Going from zero to the top could easily go to the heads of most high school players, but that’s not the nature of this blue-collar squad which enters the postseason as even-keeled as possible, Beracochea said.

“We have never been in this position, so we don’t want to get too far ahead of ourselves,” Beracochea said. “We’re a very humble team.”

The 5A girls bracket has seven UIL teams in the top 16, most of which will face each other in the first three rounds. Two out of the seven are guaranteed to see their season come to an abrupt halt after the second round.

The most intriguing of these future pairings is the potential second-round match between No. 6 Flower Mound and No. 5 Mansfield in the area round. The winner of that area Super Bowl could then face No. 7 Plano West before reaching the regional tournament.

Saved from that mess is No. 2 McKinney Boyd, which returns to the postseason trying to repeat as 5A state champions.

Get Familiar: Elite wide receiver Jake Oliver

March, 12, 2012
3/12/12
12:24
PM CT
Jake OliverMiller Safrit/ESPN.comDallas Jesuit wide receiver Jake Oliver caught 108 passes for 1,637 yards and 24 touchdowns last fall and was named an ESPNHS Underclass All-American.

Jake Oliver loves to block. In fact, the 6-foot-4, 200-pound wide receiver says one of his biggest thrills each Friday night is getting a chance to knock a defender on his back.

Oliver also loves to catch passes. And the Jesuit (Dallas) junior catches a lot of passes.

This past season, he earned a spot on the ESPNHS Underclass All-American team after hauling in 108 passes for 1,637 yards and 24 touchdowns, numbers that most high school receivers would be happy to have in a career. Oliver has snagged 215 passes during his three years with the Rangers.

Oliver has learned a lot about being a wide receiver from his father, Gary, a former standout wideout at Texas A&M who later served as offensive coordinator at Sam Houston State and led Bishop Lynch (Dallas) to two state titles.

The ESPNU 150 Watch List receiver also had plenty of support from his dad and the rest of his family during the recruiting process. Though Oliver’s father and mother both attended A&M and his brother is a student at Oklahoma, he says none them tried to sway him toward their respective schools.

Instead, they let him handle recruiting on his own terms, and Oliver ultimately decided to commit to Texas last month.

So what does Oliver plan on doing now that his commitment is out of the way? Get Familiar with the standout pass-catcher.

ESPNHS: What’s the most important thing you learned from your father about playing wide receiver?
Oliver: You can have all the athletic talent in the world, but if you can’t get open, it will all go to waste. Practice makes you better all the time. Even going out for 30 minutes helps you a lot. I always catch and throw with my dad. I turn to my left and my right, over-the-shoulder catches — every situation I could be in during a game, he throws me that pass. Every possible catch I can think of, we’ve worked on it. We also work with tennis balls. It teaches you reflexes and hand-eye coordination.

ESPNHS: What’s an underrated aspect of your game?
Oliver: I take a lot of pride in my blocking. I’m a big receiver, and blocking has to be a big part of my game. If you block for your teammates, it can set up big plays. I also like to get after the DBs just to let ‘em know that I’ll be there all night and they better be ready. I love contact and love knocking people down.

ESPNHS: How do you deal with all the attention on the field?
Oliver: Almost every game I see double coverage. You’ve got to fight through it. But I could get zero catches and be happy as long as we got the win. Coach (Brandon) Hickman puts me in good position to run the right routes and break these coverages. You’ve got adjust. It’s usually the corner pressing me and then the safety coming over the top (to help).

ESPNHS: How relieved were you after you committed to Texas?
Oliver: It was a big weight lifted off my shoulders. There were a lot of things to think about leading up to the decision. Everybody trying to sway you, just thinking about what would be the best place to be — it was kind of overwhelming. Texas was always up there with my favorite schools, but since they didn’t offer until their junior day, I wasn’t sure. Once they offered, it was really cool. Not too many people can say that’s happened to them, and I feel blessed it happened to me.

I can’t imagine being anywhere else. My grandparents come to all my games and I’d love for them to come see my college games. It’s got a great tradition, great family atmosphere and great academics. Those are just some of the many reasons why I picked Texas.

ESPNHS: How did your family deal with your recruitment?
Oliver: My dad loves A&M, but he said, “It’s your decision. It’s not up to me. I’ll support you no matter what." My mom and my brother said the same thing.

JAKE OLIVER
School: Jesuit (Dallas)
Class: 2013
Position: Wide receiver
HT: 6-4
WT: 200
College: Texas

FAVORITES
TV Show: “How I Met Your Mother”
Movie: “Dumb and Dumber” and “Friday Night Lights”
Musical Artists: Blake Shelton and Lil Wayne
Athletes: Calvin Johnson and Justin Blackmon
Team: Dallas Cowboys
School Subject: World history
Food: Chicken

Jesuit receiver Jake Oliver commits to Texas

February, 15, 2012
2/15/12
4:42
PM CT
Dallas Jesuit junior receiver Jake Oliver committed to Texas, William Wilkerson of HornsNation reported.

Oliver is Texas' second commitment from the Class of 2013, joining Celina offensive lineman Jake Raulerson.

HornsNation's Carter Strickland has more here about Oliver's commitment, calling it an important recruiting victory for Texas over rivals Oklahoma and Texas A&M.

Four area recruits make 2013 early top 100 list

February, 2, 2012
2/02/12
4:30
PM CT
Four area players show up on ESPN Recruiting's early look at the top 100 prospects for the class of 2013.

The list is in alphabetical order, but players are ranked as four- or five-star recruits.

Celina OT Jake Raulerson is the area's only five-star prospect on the list.

Dallas Kimball DT Justin Manning, Dallas Jesuit WR Jake Oliver and Lake Highlands OT Kent Perkins are on the list as four-star recruits.

It's noted that players on this list aren't guaranteed to be in next year's ESPNU 150.

Four 5A districts in area undergo little change

February, 2, 2012
2/02/12
2:32
PM CT
NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, Texas -- The makeup changed very little or not at all in four of the area’s nine Class 5A districts at Thursday's UIL reclassification and realignment.

*The current District 4-5A (five Arlington schools, Fort Worth Paschal, North Crowley and Weatherford) remained intact but, because of district consolidation in West Texas, changed its number to 3-5A.

That’s an agreeable change, said Anthony Criss, football coach at Arlington Sam Houston and former Arlington ISD assistant athletic director.

“It’s great for Arlington because it means we stay in the area for first-round playoff games instead of going to West Texas,’’ Criss said. “We’d still go west once, but not until the second round.''

*The current District 5-5A retained seven of its eight members in the new District 7-5A: Cedar Hill, DeSoto, Duncanville, Grand Prairie, South Grand Prairie, Mansfield and Mansfield Timberview. The only change is Mansfield Legacy drops down to Class 4A and powerhouse DeSoto takes its place.

“A tough district just got tougher,’’ said Grand Prairie coach Gary Bartel.

*In District 9-5A, Dallas Samuell dropped to Class 4A and was replaced by Richardson Pearce, which is moving back up to 5A. The other seven members are unchanged: Dallas Jesuit, Dallas Skyline, Dallas Sunset, Dallas W.T. White, Richardson, Richardson Berkner and Lake Highlands.

“I wasn’t sure Jesuit would stay in,’’ said Skyline coach Reginald Samples. “In fact, we had agreed to play them in a nondistrict game if they weren’t in our district.’’

*The seven Garland ISD schools that made up 10-5A in the last realignment are now without McKinney Boyd as they go forward as District 11-5A with this lineup: Garland, Garland Lakeview, Garland Naaman Forest, North Garland, Rowlett, Sachse and South Garland.

Lake Highlands guard sparks win over Jesuit

January, 14, 2012
1/14/12
12:22
AM CT
DALLAS, Texas -- One glance at Lake Highlands point guard Beau Barnes from the stands in the Lake Highlands gym and you can see the resemblance.

As he drove from the perimeter to the baseline with 12 seconds remaining in the game and his team down 47-45, even a double-take might not make Barnes look any less like former Dallas Mavericks guard J.J. Barea.

Beau Barnes
Travis L. Brown/ESPNDallas.comLake Highlands guard Beau Barnes did his best J.J. Barea impression to help spark an upset of Dallas Jesuit.
With his diminutive stature, short hair and stubbly beard, Barnes never looked more like the Puerto Rican guard than on Friday, when he drained two free throws after that baseline drive, tying the game at 47. Twelve seconds and one more Barnes free throw later, his Wildcats (12-10, 3-2) took a huge District 9-5A game from Dallas Jesuit (17-4, 3-2), 51-47.

"With the full beard and the short year, yes [people tell me I look like Barea]," Barnes said. "They tell me I play more like him than I look like him, but we're both not close to 6 feet, no matter what people say about J.J."

All the time Barnes said he spent studying film of Barea's play over the past several years came in handy Friday, especially in the fourth quarter.

Barnes left the court in the final period with leg cramps, but was able to re-enter the game and provide a spark for a Wildcat team that had seen its lead vanish late in the game.

Lake Highlands cut Jesuit's lead to one at 46-45 on a 3-pointer from the corner by senior forward Travis Hornstein with 29.5 seconds remaining in the game.

Barnes went so far as to call the shot "a turning point in the season."

"It was the biggest shot all year," Barnes said.

Jesuit guard Jared Johnson hit one of two free throws on the next possession, giving the Rangers a two-point lead.

Barnes drew a foul on a baseline drive and hit both free throws to tie the game, then nabbed a Jesuit turnover and drew another foul with 4.9 seconds remaining. He hit one of two, giving Lake Highlands a one-point lead.

"Those were the two toughest free throws in my life and I managed to hit one to give us the lead," Barnes said. "It's tough to block out that whole crowd though."

Jesuit threw a prayer of a pass to try and hit a last minute shot, but it was intercepted by Lake Highlands to ensure the win.

From the game's start, Barnes brought the energy that is a trademark of his Minnesota Timberwolves doppelganger. The Wildcats' first points of the game came off a turnaround jumper from Barnes, created by a dribble-drive through the middle of the lane.

An early 5-0 run in the second quarter and three big blocks in the frame helped the Wildcats take a 19-12 lead at the half. Lake Highlands jumped to a 40-24 edge after three quarters.

Jesuit switched to a high-pressure, full-court press in the fourth, forcing several Wildcat turnovers to help mount a late comeback.

In the end, it was Barnes' spark that gave Lake Highlands a key district win over Jesuit, who was favored to be the 2-seed in District 9-5A, putting the Wildcats in the mix for prime playoff positioning.

"Maybe this will kind of get us over the hump, because it would have been easy for us to throw up our hands late in the game and we didn't and some good things happened for us," Lake Highlands coach Rob Wylie said. "Hopefully we'll fit in to that mix of four or five teams battling for those [playoff] spots."

As Lake Highlands continues through district play, Wildcat fans should watch out for the Barea look-alike as he pushes himself to do everything his NBA counterpart can, including date a Miss Universe -- or at least a high school equivalent.

"I'm trying to get Miss Lake Highlands," Barnes said. "It's close, but I'll get there."
The little stories that arose during the 2011 high school football season are what made it so memorable. Here are some of the ESPNDallas.com high school team's picks for "Best of the Rest" awards commemorating those stories.

Best 2-way player: Sabian Holmes. Holmes was Southlake Carroll quarterback Kenny Hill's No. 1 option in the Dragon's pass game throughout the season and tallied 138 yards on 11 catches and a touchdown in the 5A Division I state championship. He also was a reliable defensive back and made a touchdown-saving, diving swat late in the title game that became one of the key plays that allowed Carroll to win its eighth state football championship.

Best individual performance: Robbie Rhodes. The Fort Worth Southwest receiver tied a national record and set a state record when he scored eight touchdowns in a 66-21 win over Fort Worth Arlington Heights. He had 10 catches for a state-record 390 yards.

2011 FOOTBALL AWARDS
Dec. 27: Coaches of the year
Dec. 28: Games of the year
Dec. 29: Newcomers of the year
Dec. 30: Best of the rest
Jan. 2: Defensive POYs
Jan. 3: Offensive POYs
Jan. 4: MVPs
Honorable mention: Wesley Harris. The Southwest quarterback also broke the state record for touchdown passes with nine in the same game.

Best matchup on paper: Johnathan Gray vs. Cameron Washington. Two 3,000-yard rushers met for the first time in the playoffs when Gray and Aledo faced off against Washington and Corsicana in the 4A Division II state semifinal. The game turned out to be not nearly as great as it was billed because of the effort of Aledo’s defense to hold Washington to just 91 yards. Gray tallied 218 yards and claimed his 204th career touchdown, tying the national record.

Best milestone: 300 wins. Highland Park coach Randy Allen earned win No. 300 when his Scots beat Richardson J.J. Pearce 41-27 at Highlander Stadium. The win tied Allen for 10th all-time in the state with Gregory-Portland’s Ray Akins.

Best school districts: Arlington, Mansfield and Frisco ISDs had a lot of work still left to do long after the regular season ended as each sent two schools into the third round of the playoffs. Two Keller ISD schools made the playoffs in the always-tough District 7-5A. Mesquite ISD sent three teams into the playoffs and not many would have expected the Mesquite Skeeters to be the only team left alive in the 5A Division I region semifinals.

Best revenge wins: Skyline and Arlington Martin. It took five tries, but Arlington Martin finally ended Euless Trinity’s season early for once, beating the Trojans 19-7 at Trinity’s home stadium, Pennington Field. Skyline and DeSoto met for the fourth straight time in the playoffs and Skyline avenged it’s 38-0 loss to the Eagles last season with a 41-31 win in 2011.

Best under the radar star: Jake Oliver. Oliver of Jesuit had 108 catches for 1,637 yards and 23 touchdowns and was key in Jesuit’s district run after starting quarterback Jack Brezette was lost for the season with a knee injury. Oliver was a finalist for the Tom Landry award.
MESQUITE, Texas – Sachse quarterback Trent White stood expressionless on the the field of Mesquite Memorial Stadium after the Mustangs' 49-42 Class 5A Division II win over Dallas Jesuit on Friday.

Looking at him, you would never think he'd just led his team to the first playoff win in the school’s nine-year history.

[+] EnlargeTrent White
Travis L. Brown/ESPNDallas.comQuarterback Trent White accounted for five of Sachse's seven touchdowns against Dallas Jesuit.
“Nothing excites Trent,” Sachse coach Mark Behrens said. “He’s one of those poised young men and you wouldn’t know it if we were battling to come back or up by 40. He’s just so relaxed.”

And it’s that relaxed nature that helped him create the game-winning play. After being flushed out of the pocket, White hit receiver Brandon Durr on a short dump pass, and Durr took the near-sack 42 yards for the deciding score with 43 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter.

“I don’t know. I guess it’s a lot of instinct, but our receivers know how to get open whenever they see me get open, and I just try to get them the ball and let them do what they can do,” White said.

Christian Minies officially put the game away on an interception with just seconds left on the clock.

“I wanted to take it to the house, but I thought, ‘Just seal it up and don’t fumble,’” Minies said, with much more enthusiasm than is pass-throwing teammate.

Sachse (8-3) jumped out to a quick 14-0 lead on its first two possessions and carried that momentum to a 35-21 halftime lead.

Jesuit’s defense came on strong in the third, blanking Sachse in the frame.

The Rangers (8-3) tied the score at 35 in the fourth and then again at 42 with three minutes left.

UIL PLAYOFFS
STAFF PICKS
Bi-district »   Area round »
Region semis »   Region finals »
State semis »   Finals »   Totals »

STATE BRACKETS
Class 5A: Div. I | Div. II
Class 4A: Div. I | Div. II

REGION BRACKETS
5A Division I: Reg. 1 | Reg. 2
5A Division II: Reg. 1 | Reg. 2
4A Division I: Reg. 1 | Reg. 2
4A Division II: Reg. 1 | Reg. 2

Sachse keyed in on its run game, utilizing power running back Billy Cole instead of relying on the pass. The change in pace got Jesuit’s defense to bite on the run, opening up several deep post routes throughout the game.

The strategy also chewed up the clock and kept the ball away from Jesuit’s high-powered offense.

“We needed to keep them off the field as much as possible," Behrens said. "You see what they do when they have the ball. And they’ve scored points on everyone, except Skyline. That was a quality football team we beat tonight.”

White accounted for five of his team’s touchdowns, four passing and one rushing, and crossed the 3,000-yard passing mark for the season.

Sachse advances to the area round to face the winner of Saturday's Longview-Temple game.

Behrens said White understands the team's accomplishment and what it means for the community of Sachse. The quarterback just acknowledges it as quickly as he escapes a tackle to make a big play.

“You probably missed it, but he probably gave you a little smile,” Behrens said.

Jesuit, Sachse put passing games on display

November, 9, 2011
11/09/11
8:36
PM CT
DALLAS JESUIT (8-2) vs. SACHSE (7-3)
7:30 p.m. Friday at Mesquite Memorial Stadium


What: Class 5A Division II Region 2 bi-district game

When we saw them last: Jesuit, which finished second in District 9-5A, built momentum heading into the playoffs with a 40-12 win over Sunset. Sachse didn’t fair nearly as well in its regular-season finale, losing to District 10-5A champion Garland, 41-19. Sachse finished fourth in District 10-5A.

UIL PLAYOFFS
STAFF PICKS
Bi-district »   Area round »
Region semis »   Region finals »
State semis »   Finals »   Totals »

STATE BRACKETS
Class 5A: Div. I | Div. II
Class 4A: Div. I | Div. II

REGION BRACKETS
5A Division I: Reg. 1 | Reg. 2
5A Division II: Reg. 1 | Reg. 2
4A Division I: Reg. 1 | Reg. 2
4A Division II: Reg. 1 | Reg. 2

Last in the playoffs: This is Sachse’s first trip to the playoffs in the school’s nine-year history. Rowlett bounced Jesuit in last year’s bi-district playoffs, 35-28, at SMU’s Ford Stadium.

What’s at stake: The winner has the unfortunate draw of facing the winner of Longview (9-1) and Temple (6-4) in the area round. Longview is currently ranked No. 6 in the AP state poll.

Key matchup: The defenses against the pass-happy offenses. Don’t expect this game to go by quickly, as both teams look to the air as their primary means of moving the ball. Sachse quarterback Trent White has thrown for almost 3,000 yards this season, targeting a committee of receivers led by Chris Robb. When Sachse pushes it close to the goal line, Billy Cole handles the ball on the ground, accounting for 15 rushing touchdowns. Jesuit has one of the top receivers in the area in Jake Oliver, who has over 1,400 yards and 20 touchdowns. Quarterback Brian Buell has over 2,000 yards passing despite not starting until the fourth game of the season.

Players to watch: Oliver is fearless going up to get balls and typically comes through in the clutch when Jesuit runs a two-minute offense. Sachse’s offensive success will depend on the performance of White.

Prediction: Dallas Jesuit 49, Sachse 42.
CLASS 5A DIVISION II REGION 2 PREVIEW

Overview: Most of top-tier teams from the area in the 5A Division II bracket come from Region I, so there shouldn’t be many surprises out of Region II. Don’t expect any Metroplex teams to make it much further than the area round in this region.

UIL PLAYOFFS
STAFF PICKS
Bi-district »   Area round »
Region semis »   Region finals »
State semis »   Finals »   Totals »

STATE BRACKETS
Class 5A: Div. I | Div. II
Class 4A: Div. I | Div. II

REGION BRACKETS
5A Division I: Reg. 1 | Reg. 2
5A Division II: Reg. 1 | Reg. 2
4A Division I: Reg. 1 | Reg. 2
4A Division II: Reg. 1 | Reg. 2

Two teams from the AP state top 10 are in this region: No. 6 Longview and No. 9 Lufkin. Copperas Cove also received votes in the last AP poll of the regular season.

Favorite: Longview. With a final-game win over DeSoto to take the District 11-5A championship, the Lobos set themselves apart as the front-runner in this region. Longview went 9-1 on the season (5-0 in district), with its only loss coming against a 5A Division I favorite, Allen.

Watch out for: Mesquite Horn. It would be a long shot, but if you are looking for an area team to pull for out of this region, it would have to be the Jaguars (4-6). Horn opens up the playoffs against Copperas Cove, which could be one of the best bi-district matchups in this region. If Horn can withstand this test, it should be fine against the Rowlett-Dallas Lake Highlands winner. Horn went through Copperas Cove and Rowlett last season in route to a quarterfinal loss to Longview. Horn could follow the same path back to the quarterfinals it traveled last year.

Can’t wait to see: Dallas Jesuit vs. Sachse (7:30 p.m. Friday, Mesquite Memorial Stadium). This is the best bi-district matchup with two teams from the area in this region and would rival Horn-Copperas Cove as the region's best game this weekend. Jesuit (8-2) had a quality team throughout the regular season, even after losing its starting quarterback to injury in the third game of the season, and finished second to powerhouse Dallas Skyline in District 9-5A. Sachse (7-3) was a surprise at the beginning of the season, starting 4-0 before taking its first lost to Rowlett. Sachse quarterback Trent White is a beast in the passing game, racking up just under 3,000 yards through the air this season.

We hope to see: Longview-Lufkin. This would a great game if both reach the regional final, with two high-scoring teams.

Talent pool (FBS recruits): Longview: WR Eric Hawkins (Arkansas). Spring Dekaney: RB Trey Williams (Texas A&M), TE Armand Nance (Boise State), DB Jarrett Irving (Houston). Copperas Cove: ATH Orlando Thomas (Texas). Mesquite Horn: DB DeVante Harris (Oklahoma). Lufkin: DT Tomme Mark (offers: Michigan State, Tulsa, Utah, Kansas, SMU, Stephen F. Austin). Spring Westfield: DT Anthony Smith (Texas Tech). Leander: CB Martel Summers (offers: Arizona, New Mexico, Northwestern, Texas State, UTEP). Austin: WR Cayleb Jones (Texas).

Playoff-bound Jesuit tops Lake Highlands in 2OT

October, 22, 2011
10/22/11
12:59
AM CT
DALLAS -- It was an exciting game at Wildcat-Ram Stadium on Friday night as Dallas Jesuit beat Lake Highlands 49-42 in double overtime.

The Rangers prevailed with Garrett Van de Ven’s 3-yard run that sent the Jesuit fans into celebration and the Lake Highlands crowd into silence.

“It’s a power play that we ran there," Jesuit coach Brandon Hickman said. "The offensive line did a great job opening up a hole and Garrett punched it in the end zone."

The win clinched a playoff spot for Jesuit (6-2, 4-1), which took over sole possession of second place in District 9-5A.

“We called a little trap play to the left and I just followed my alignment and I just snuck in there. It was a great play,” Van de Ven said.

It was a close game from beginning to end, as Lake Highlands continuously battled from behind to keep even with Jesuit, which moved the ball well all night.

“They had the same never-give-up attitude we have had all year and it showed tonight,” Hickman said.

Lake Highlands (4-4, 3-2) is left in a three-way fight with Richardson Berkner (5-3, 3-2) and Richardson (4-4, 2-3) for the final two playoff spots in 9-5A. Lake Highlands and Richardson play in Week 10 in what could turn out to be an elimination game.

The first half started off slowly Friday. Jesuit had the only touchdown in the first quarter with Will Brown’s catch on Brian Buell’s 1-yard pass.

However, the second quarter gave the home crowd reason to cheer. After Jesuit scored again on Buell’s 15-yard pass to Jake Oliver, Lake Highlands quickly bounced back with two touchdowns to tie the score 14-14.

Jesuit, however, scored twice more in the second on Buell’s 24-yard pass to Marty Murad and Van de Ven’s 33-yard run and took a 28-14 lead into halftime.

Lake Highlands got right back into the game in the second half with two touchdowns in the third quarter to tie it, 28-28.

Jesuit went ahead again in the fourth quarter with Van de Ven’s 6-yard run. However, Lake Highlands tied it up at 35-35 and blocked Jesuit kicker Sean Badger’s field goal attempt to send the game into overtime.

Both teams scored in first overtime. With the game tied at 42-42 in second overtime, Lake Highlands fumbled the ball, giving Van de Ven his chance to score three plays later and win the game.

“We all played together tonight," Van de Ven said. "The offensive line did a great job blocking and the receivers ran some great routes. All around, we just played together as a team and it worked out great.”

Chat wrap: Allen, Jesuit, T'view win thrillers

October, 21, 2011
10/21/11
7:00
PM CT
In arguably the biggest regular-season game of the year, No. 1 Allen travels to No. 6 Flower Mound Marcus tonight in for a battle of unbeaten District 8-5A heavyweights. Jeff Andrews is on the scene to bring you updates and and answer your questions.

We also have writers at Cedar Hill-Mansfield (Randy Jennings), Duncanville-Mansfield Timberview (Travis L. Brown) and Dallas Jesuit-Dallas Lake Highlands (Brittany Levine) to provide updates and take questions.

Here are this week's previews, and here's the Week 8 scoreboard.

DALLAS JESUIT (5-2 9-5A, 3-1) AT DALLAS LAKE HIGHLANDS (4-3, 3-1)
>7:30 p.m. Friday at Lake Highlands’ Wildcat-Ram Stadium




When we saw them last: Jesuit doubled up on Richardson, 62-30, behind an eight-touchdown performance from fill-in quarterback Brian Buell. Lake Highlands lost a heartbreaker to rival Richardson Berkner, 16-13, changing the shared stadium's name to Ram-Wildcat Stadium next year.

2010 result: Lake Highlands beat Jesuit, 29-20, in current Wildcat running back DeVonte Sunwenghan's breakout game. Filling in for injured star and current Oklahoma State freshman Desmond Roland, Sunwenghan rushed for just under 200 yards and four touchdowns in the game that assured Lake Highlands the No. 2 seed in District 9-5A.

What’s at stake: Jesuit needs to continue to win to claim a second-place finish in District 9-5A behind Dallas Skyline. Lake Highlands is currently tied with Jesuit for second in the district, but has yet to play ESPN Dallas 5A No. 2 Skyline and playoff contender Richardson. Lake Highlands needs to come up with a big win against Jesuit to give the Wildcats a leg up in the race for the last two playoff spots.

Key matchup: Jesuit’s defense against Lake Highlands rushing attack. The Wildcats have proven to be a very one-dimensional team, limited to production on the ground. Until last week’s game, when Michael Ketchmark threw for 133 yards vs. Berkner, no Wildcat passer had thrown for more than 100 yards in a game this season. Jesuit must shut down Sunwenghan and force Lake Highlands to move the ball through the air.

Players to watch: Both teams’ quarterbacks have interesting storylines coming into this game. Before the first game of the season, Jesuit quarterback Brian Buell was relegated to the second team. But after Jack Brezette went down in Jesuit’s loss to Coppell, Buell has filled in seamlessly, throwing for eight touchdowns last weekend. Ketchmark won the starting job over classmate Trent Jones last season, but Ketchmark had been sidelined for the majority of this season because of injury. He returned two weeks ago and has shown signs of being at full strength, but he's several weeks behind in game-speed action.

Prediction: Jesuit 42, Lake Highlands 10.

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