By Nolan Ruth
The Community News
The Aledo Bearcats went into Globe Life Park in Arlington on Friday afternoon to take on the North Forney Falcons in the area round. While the matchup was expected to be a barn burner, the Bearcats had no trouble jumping on the Falcons and cruising to a 49-24 victory.
“I’m really proud of our kids,” coach Tim Buchanan said after the game. “Our kids played really well. For the first time this year, and I know we played some really good people, we played like we were playing in a playoff game and I was so proud.”
North Forney took the opening drive all the way down the field and scored on a one-yard keeper to take an early lead. It would be the only time Aledo trailed all day. Less than two minutes later, Jo Jo Earle (7 carries, 28 yards, 2 TDs, 3 receptions, 25 yards) took the direct snap and strolled in from four yards out. On the ensuing drive, BJ Allen came up with a deflected interception that gave the Bearcats the ball back. Earle did the rest, scoring his second touchdown of the day to give Aledo a 14-7 lead at the end of the first quarter.
In the second quarter, Demarco Roberts (27 carries, 224 yards, 4 TDs) took over as he went 56 yards on the first drive to extend the Bearcat lead. The Aledo defense was able to make a goal-line stand on the next drive, but had the ball on the one yard line. Two plays later, Earle went down in the end zone for a safety. He made up for it after the next defensive stop by taking the punt off the hop and going 82 yards to the house. North Forney added one more score before halftime to bring the score to 28-17.
“I was not expecting that, I was just expecting the usual game plan,” Roberts commented on his amount of carries. “It was a little workload on me, but the workouts that we do and the practice we put in really showed today.”
Roberts added the only score in the third quarter on a 27-yard run around the left side. In the fourth quarter, he added two more scores from 3 and 15 respectively. The Aledo defense really stepped up in the second half, not allowing a single point until garbage time. Linebacker Sam Forman recorded the most tackles in the second half and helped hold the line for the Bearcat defense. Once the starters had been pulled, the Falcons added one more score to bring the final to 49-24.
“Our biggest mentality as a defense was that we just have to go play,” Forman said postgame. “Once that ball gets rolling it doesn’t stop. That’s always the mentality.”
The Bearcats move on to play the winner of Frisco and South Oak Cliff tentatively set for next Thursday at a time and place TBD for the regional championship.