High School: North Mesquite

Keep an eye on these Big 12 area products

May, 9, 2012
5/09/12
2:10
PM CT

ESPN.com Big 12 blogger David Ubben says Baylor QB Nick Florence of South Garland, Oklahoma State WR Josh Stewart of Denton Guyer and Texas RB Joe Bergeron of North Mesquite are three players to watch in the Big 12 this year.

Rockwall teams head east instead of DeSoto

February, 2, 2012
2/02/12
4:27
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NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, Texas -- North Mesquite, Mesquite Horn and Mesquite High will continue their ties to East Texas foes Longview and Tyler Lee for the fifth straight realignment.

This time, the Mesquite schools will be joined by Rockwall and Rockwall-Heath for a seven-team District 12-5A. The Rockwall schools are moving up from Class 4A.

Rockwall was a part of the East Texas district along with the Mesquite schools in 2004-05.

The last two realignments included DeSoto in the East Texas district, but the Eagles got a reprieve this time.

DeSoto athletic director Pam Deborde said the news of a move to District 7-5A to join neighbors Cedar Hill and Duncanville brought a lot of excitement to Eagles athletes on Thursday.

“Now our kids can play teams they grew up playing against and in some cases played on the same teams with,’’ Deborde said. “Our seniors are upset that this didn’t happen in time for them.’’

Mesquite athletic director Steve Bragg was unfazed.

“We’re used to going to East Texas,’’ said Bragg. “We’ve developed some very good friendships. Financially, it is a strain on our school district, but we understand that somebody has to go. Nobody likes to travel but somebody has to. And we’re looking forward to working with the Rockwall schools.’’

Deborde said DeSoto never formed a rivalry in its present district.

“It was time for us, we served our four years,’’ she said.

42 years later, Mesquite-N. Mesquite a big game

October, 10, 2011
10/10/11
9:53
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The Mesquite Skeeters and North Mesquite Stallions renew their football rivalry for the 42nd time Friday night.

Kickoff is 7:30 p.m. at 20,000-seat Mesquite Memorial Stadium. And this rivalry is a reason why Memorial Stadium was built in 1977 to hold 20,000.

Perhaps the intensity isn’t as fierce as in the days before the Mesquite ISD grew from two high schools to its current number of five, but the game remains one that both sides circle when the schedule is released each year.

North Mesquite defeated Mesquite last year, 49-11, to snap a six-year Skeeters winning streak.

The series began in 1970, a year after North Mesquite opened as the second high school in the Mesquite ISD. The Skeeters own a 21-19-1 series lead. The 1983 game ended in a scoreless tie.

North Mesquite (4-2, 0-1 in District 11-5A) comes into this year’s game with the better record. The Stallions last week built a 17-0 halftime lead on DeSoto, ranked No. 3 in ESPNDallas.com Class 5A Top 10, but fell victim to an Eagles comeback, 28-17.

The Stallions like to grind it out with senior Anthony Sims leading an able group of ball carriers with 631 yards and five touchdowns. Quarterback King Davis has thrown for 534 yards and six touchdowns.

Mesquite (3-3, 0-1) was beaten handily in its 11-5A opener by Longview, 54-21.

Skeeters quarterback Alex Cooper, a junior, has thrown for 931 yards and 11 touchdowns. Another 11th grader, Junior Sessions, is Mesquite’s top rusher with 631 yards and top scorer with 66 points.

Last year’s win by the Stallions continued a trend of lopsided scores in the rivalry game. The average victory margin the last five years is 28 points. The only one-score game in that stretch was Mesquite’s 28-21 victory in 2007.

Rankings: Skyline rises over DeSoto to No. 2

October, 9, 2011
10/09/11
11:04
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What we got right: Most of the teams in the top 10 remained the same, but Week 6 might have shuffled the deck more than any week to date. The 4A poll remained mostly the same with the exception of Waxahachie jumping to the No. 4 position after its win over Corsicana.

What we got wrong: Skyline proved itself with a decisive win over Dallas Jesuit on Friday, which shot the Raiders over DeSoto, who struggled for a victory over North Mesquite, for the first time this year. Keller Central more than proved it belonged among the best in the area with a 6-0 record and a win over previous No. 8 Denton Guyer. Everman comes in at No. 10, with several weeks of quality play after taking a Zero Week loss from Highland Park.

Say hello to: 5A -- Keller Central; 4A --Everman

Say goodbye to: 5A --Denton Guyer; 4A -- Mesquite Poteet

Watch out for: 5A Arlington Lamar; 4A -- Fort Worth Southwest

Week 6 scores: Close shaves for No. 2 teams

October, 8, 2011
10/08/11
12:29
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Thursday's close calls by the top-ranked teams in ESPNDallas.com's area rankings were just a prelude to more mayhem Friday.

Both No. 2 teams were shut out in the first half of Friday games before storming back to protect their unbeaten records.

5A No. 2 DeSoto fell behind North Mesquite 17-0 before rallying for a 28-17 victory.

4A No. 2 Highland Park dug itself out of an even bigger hole, falling behind 21-0 against Wylie. But the Scots took control in the second half and pulled out the 24-21 victory.

That came after 5A No. 1 Allen and 4A No. 1 Denton Ryan struggled to victories as Week 6 kicked off Thursday night.

Click here for all of the 4A and 5A Week 6 scores in the area and updated records.

DeSoto hosts North Mesquite in 11-5A opener

October, 5, 2011
10/05/11
5:42
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NORTH MESQUITE (4-1, 0-0 11-5A) vs. No. 2 DeSOTO (5-0, 0-0),
7:30 p.m. Friday at DeSoto‘s Eagle Stadium


When we saw them last: Both teams routed opponents in final nondistrict tune-ups before enjoying an open date last weekend. North Mesquite throttled Lubbock High, 49-14, in Sweetwater. DeSoto blitzed NOAH of Tulsa, Okla., with 35 first-quarter points on the way to a 61-13 blowout.

2010 result: DeSoto’s passing attack produced 357 yards and four touchdowns in a 30-20 victory in Mesquite.

What’s at stake: A good start in the District 11-5A opener for both teams is important, since each team plays only five district games.

Key matchup: The DeSoto defense has shown remarkable improvement so far this season, cutting its points allowed from 32.4 per game in 2010 to 7.2 this season. But North Mesquite has a run-pass mixture that could challenge the undefeated Eagles.

Players to watch: Running back Anthony Sims and quarterback King Davis are the Stallions’ top offensive threats. Linebacker Alex Lyons is an active tackler and option quarterback Raheem Wilson is getting better every game for DeSoto.

Prediction: North Mesquite pulled off a rare win at Longview last season and will need the same kind of effort in this one. DeSoto 38, North Mesquite 24.

11-5A race shaped by many miles, few games

October, 3, 2011
10/03/11
5:28
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Raw numbers sounds favorable enough: six teams, four playoff spots.

But in District 11-5A , which starts its five-week schedule Friday, a top-four finish isn’t a snap. It isn’t unusual for a very good football team to be left out of postseason.

With three Mesquite schools and DeSoto to the west and Longview and Tyler Lee to the east, the road to success in 11-5A follows along I-20.

The opening-night schedule for 11-5A on Friday matches North Mesquite at DeSoto, Longview at Mesquite and Mesquite Horn at Tyler Lee.

“I’d put this district in the top three in the state,’’ said DeSoto coach Claude Mathis, whose team is No. 2 in the ESPNDallas.com 5A Top 10. “I tell our guys this first district game is so important. If you win, you have a good chance to be in the playoffs. If you don't, it is an uphill battle.''

At its greatest distance, from DeSoto to Longview, 11-5A spans 139 miles.

DeSoto (5-0) and Longview (4-1) are expected to once again contend for the title after tying at the top with 4-1 district records in 2010. To heighten the drama, the game will be played Week 10 in Longview. The game was recently switched from Friday to Thursday night to accommodate television.

Mathis points out that last year, three 11-5A playoff teams -- DeSoto, Mesquite Horn and Longview -- advanced to the state quarterfinal round. Longview took it a step further, to a state semifinal.

North Mesquite, off to a 4-1 start this season, was the hard-luck 11-5A team not to make the playoffs in 2010, despite pulling off the rare win in Longview.

“You can say we only play five district games, but playing Longview in Longview is like playing three games,’’ Mathis said.

Plano West ruins North Mesquite's perfect start

September, 16, 2011
9/16/11
11:26
PM CT
MESQUITE, Texas -- Homecoming mums lay ruined by rain in the stands of Mesquite Memorial Stadium on Friday, right next to the field where North Mesquite’s record was also tarnished.

Plano West (2-1) allowed North Mesquite (3-1) just 121 yards and dominated in a 27-10 rain-soaked win.

[+] EnlargePlano West
Travis L. Brown/ESPNDallas.comPlano West QB Carson Smith had 61 yards rushing, including a 12-yard score.
The rain changed Plano West’s offensive game plan, head coach Mike Hughes said, but didn’t affect its ability to beat up on North Mesquite’s offensive line.

“We have to play the run to beat the teams in our district and that’s our focus -- to make them throw the ball,” Hughes said. “Then, we feel like we have a chance to be successful.”

The West defense followed the game plan exactly as Hughes said, allowing North Mesquite only 62 yards rushing and five first downs.

Running back Carlos Wiggins was Plano West’s main scoring threat on the night. He found the end zone twice -- his first score came in the first quarter on a 51-yard run and his second in the fourth on a 2-yard run that sealed the win.

Plano West quarterback Carson Smith was key in moving the ball down the field, keeping the ball on a read option for 61 yards rushing, including a 12-yard touchdown run in the third quarter.

Both teams' punters got plenty of practice. North Mesquite was forced to punt nine times and Plano West six.

Kicker Zakk Myer booted in two field-goal attempts, one from 22-yards in the first and another from 31-yards in the third, to complete Plano’s scoring on the night.

Hughes said his players came out with more intensity looking to end North Mesquite’s 3-0 start and gain confidence before district play begins next week against Lewisville.

“Our backs were a little more against the wall then theirs,” Hughes said. “We just want to get better every game. We played well and beat a good team tonight.”
Thanks for joining us for Week 3 of the high school football season. We have Travis L. Brown live from Plano West-North Mesquite at Mesquite Memorial Stadium, Jeff Andrews at Mesquite-Denton Ryan from Denton's C.H. Collins Athletic Complex and Randy Jennings joining you from Grapevine's Mustang-Panther Stadium for the District 6-5A opener between Grapevine and Colleyville Heritage. We'll keep you updated on the action right here at ESPN Dallas.

PLANO WEST (1-1) at NORTH MESQUITE (3-0)
7:30 p.m. Friday at Mesquite Memorial Stadium

When we saw them last: Plano West edged out South Garland 21-17 in its second game of the season. North Mesquite handed South Grand Prairie its second loss in a row to a Mesquite school with a 29-9 win at the Gopher-Warrior Bowl.

2010 result: Turnovers killed North Mesquite in a 17-14 loss. The Stallions lost the ball three times by fumble and three by interception. North Mesquite fumbled a total of five times in the game. North Mesquite outgained Plano West by almost 100 yards.

What’s at stake: North Mesquite’s undefeated start. North Mesquite has raised a few eyebrows after three weeks of play, beating two teams expected to have strong seasons this year, Rowelett and South Grand Prairie, and taking care of business against North Garland. With a few more wins, North Mesquite could make a case for being one of the top programs in the area, but Plano West could have something to say about that.

Key matchup: Both team’s running games. Plano West and North Mesquite are fairly one-dimensional teams, using several backs to gain the majority of their yards on the ground. The team that can outrun the other, while keeping possession of the ball, can run down the clock and take the game.

Players to watch: North Mesquite has the advantage if they want to try and put the ball in the air with quarterback King Davis under center, but he will hand the ball off to Anthony Sims and Demarcus Luke, who will carry the majority of the offensive load. On offense, Plano West is all Carlos Wiggins, the team’s leading rusher and receiver. Linebacker Bryce Cottrell is the team's defensive leader and will be the main force in stopping the North Mesquite run game.

Prediction: North Mesquite 21, Plano West 10.

North Mesquite gets a kick from its 3-0 start

September, 12, 2011
9/12/11
4:10
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North Mesquite is 3-0 for the first time 2002, and there are plenty of reasons for the Stallions' quick start.

Coach Mike Robinson points out that often-overlooked special teams play has been excellent.

Punter Farid Olalde has backed opponents inside the 10 a handful of times already.

Danny Contreras and Byron Campos, who share kickoff duties, are capable of kicking out of the end zone. Both were members of the school’s soccer team that finished one game shy of playing for the Region II championship in the spring.

“It makes a big difference when the other team is starting at its 20 or inside its 10,’’ Robinson said. “It is great that we can share athletes like this. Byron has been a linebacker for us, but Danny has never played football before.’’

In the Stallions’ most recent win, 29-9 over South Grand Prairie, an Olalde punt was killed a yard away from the goal line led to a safety.

The special teams struck again when a high punt snap resulted in a 39-yard fumble return touchdown by North Mesquite sophomore Damarcus Easter.

“We had 10 men on the line ready to rush the punter,’’ Robinson said. “We had something to do with the high snap.’’

North Mesquite’s win over South Grand Prairie was played in the Gopher-Warrior Bowl. Coincidently, the 2002 Stallions went to 3-0 in the same stadium, beating Grand Prairie.

Robinson said he and the coaching staff knew this team was a good group of kids with a love for the game and high expectations.

“It’s good to see these guys go out and prove it,’’ the coach said. “We have not had one bad practice since we started.’’

The Stallions face 1-1 Plano West 7:30 p.m. Friday at Mesquite Memorial Stadium.

District 11-5A football season preview

August, 24, 2011
8/24/11
12:01
AM CT

DISTRICT 11-5A

  • DeSoto (11-3, 4-1), lost in DI regional final. Coach: Claude Mathis
  • Longview (10-5, 4-1), lost in DII state semifinal. Coach: John King
  • Mesquite (1-9, 0-5). Coach: Robbie Robinson
  • Mesquite Horn (9-5, 3-2), lost in DII regional final. Coach: Rodney Webb
  • North Mesquite (5-5, 2-3). Coach: Mike Robinson.
  • Tyler Lee (2-9, 2-3), lost in DI bi-district. Coach: Randy Huffstickler
THE BIG QUESTION: How will DeSoto replace record-setting quarterback Ryan Polite?

[+] EnlargeCurtis Riser
Travis L. Brown/ESPN.comDeSoto offensive tackle Curtis Riser is one of the players to watch in District 11-5A.
In his four-year Eagles career, Polite was anything but to opposing defenses. He smashed all the school records by throwing for 10,688 yards and 94 touchdowns. In 2010, the Eagles went four rounds deep in the playoffs and averaged almost 47 point per game. Obviously, Polite’s graduation left big shoes to fill.

Senior Raheem Wilson won the fall competition over sophomore Dezmond White for the starting spot, but coach Claude Mathis said both will see action. Wilson led DeSoto to the state 7-on-7 football championship in July.

“We don’t expect Raheem to be Ryan Polite because Ryan had years of experience,’’ Mathis said.

An advantage for Wilson is the high level of talent that will surround him. Five seniors have already made college commitments, and opportunities await several more.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

OT Curtis Riser, LB Alex Lyons, CB Bryson Echols, DE Michael Richardson, DeSoto; RB J’Haston Faggans, LB Jordan Burton, WR Eric Hawkins, Longview; WR/DB Kavaski Ervin, RB Junior Session, Mesquite; CB/WR DeVante Harris, LB Richard Jones, QB Destri White, Mesquite Horn; QB King Davis, RB Horace Borders, LB Darik Walker, North Mesquite; RB LaQuintas Wallace, QB Joseph Seeber, LB Austin Campbell, Tyler Lee.

DID YOU KNOW?

District 11-5A teams had a 10-4 postseason record last year with three teams advancing to the Region II finals. Longview and Mesquite Horn met for a second time last season in the Division II Region II final, with Longview winning 28-24. ... Mesquite Horn’s DeVante Harris, an Oklahoma commit, is the son of former Texas A&M and NFL player Rod Harris. ... Tyler Lee linebacker Austin Campbell is the nephew of the Tyler Rose, Earl Campbell. … Longview followed up two Class 4A state title game appearances by making it to the state semifinals in its return to Class 5A last season. … Tyler Lee defensive coordinator Randy Huffstickler was promoted to interim head coach in June after the resignation of Mike Owens.

PROJECTED PLAYOFF TEAMS

  1. DeSoto
  2. Longview
  3. Mesquite Horn
  4. North Mesquite

N. Mesquite's Stevens plays with heavy heart

May, 13, 2011
5/13/11
3:08
PM CT
video
Most athletes, on any level, if they had their pick, would choose to play on their home field versus a road game. For 17-year old Texas softball star Paige Stevens, home field advantage takes on a whole new meaning.

North Mesquite a win away from playoffs

October, 26, 2010
10/26/10
9:51
PM CT
North Mesquite can clinch its first playoff berth since 2007 with a win over Mesquite Horn on Friday.

Kickoff is 7:30 p.m. at Mesquite Memorial Stadium.

The Stallions (5-3, 2-1 District 11-5A) positioned themselves for only their second playoff appearance in the last eight seasons with a 21-point fourth quarter in last week’s 24-14 victory over the Longview Lobos.

Running back Joe Bergeron gained 154 of his 191 rushing yardage in the second half. The 6-foot-1, 215-pound senior scored twice in the fourth quarter. His 9-yard touchdown run with 6:33 remaining gave the Stallions their first lead, and a 27-yarder with 42 seconds on the clock was the clincher.

Bergeron, who committed to University of Texas in February, has gained 1,325 yards and scored 15 touchdowns.

Junior quarterback King Davis began the fourth-quarter rally with a 29-yard touchdown pass to Horace Borders. Davis has thrown for 888 yards and nine touchdowns.

Itr was Borders' sixth catch of the season and his first touchdown reception. Senior Dezmin Lewis leads Stallions receivers with 16 catches for 452 yards and five touchdowns.

The North Mesquite defense that forced two turnovers and three punts against Longview will need another strong performance against Horn (4-4, 1-2.) The Jaguars gained over 500 yards in a 61-47 loss to DeSoto last week.

The Stallions close the regular season with a road game against Tyler Lee on Nov. 5.
The landscape has changed since 1970 when Mesquite and North Mesquite first met on the football field.

But the addition of three more high schools over the years hasn’t watered down the 41-year-old rivalry between the Mesquite ISD’s two original high schools.

The Skeeters of Mesquite (1-5, 0-1 District 11-5A) will clash with the Stallions of North Mesquite (3-3, 0-1) at 7:30 p.m. Friday at the 20,000-seat Mesquite Memorial Stadium, built specifically over three decades ago with this rivalry in mind.

North Mesquite holds a 21-18 edge in the series. There has been one tie.

Mesquite has beaten the Stallions for six straight years and could set a series record with a victory on Friday.

History indicates the game’s outcome often has little to do with how the teams play the other nine weeks of the season. Last season, Mesquite’s 31-6 win over the Stallions was the only bright spot in a 1-9 season. North Mesquite finished 4-6 yet lost bragging rights.

Look for contrasting styles in this year’s game, Mesquite by air and North Mesquite plowing ahead with runs.

Senior quarterback Jake Lanford threw for 303 yards in Mesquite’s 35-21 loss at Longview last week. His favorite target is junior Kavaski Ervin with 22 catches for 232 yards.

North Mesquite favors the ground attack featuring University of Texas pledge Joe Bergeron. The senior has rushed for 963 yards and eight touchdowns.

Playoff chances will diminish for the losing team in a district that includes DeSoto and Mesquite Horn in addition to Longview.

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