By Nolan Ruth
The Community News
The Aledo Bearcats (10-1) celebrated a very merry Christmas Thursday night when they knocked off the Frisco Raccoons (8-2) by a score of 45-27.
“It’s football,” head coach Tim Buchanan said about the holiday game time. “It doesn’t matter if you’re playing on Christmas Eve or over Thanksgiving, but now we get to play on New Year’s Eve and it’s still football.”
The Bearcats got the ball first and were immediately led down the field behind running back Demarco Roberts. Once at the Frisco 15 yard line, Jo Jo Earle took it in from there to take the early lead. Frisco diverted from its normal power-set offense in the opening frame and responded with a long drive that ended in seven points to tie the game at the end of the first quarter.
“We were not expecting it,” Buchanan spoke about the Frisco offensive scheme in the first quarter. “They can run the ball really well. But our kids made adjustments to the pass and made plays.”
Roberts led off the second quarter with a touchdown run from 11 yards out to retake the lead. Then, after blocking a punt, Roberts added another touchdown to make the score 21-7. After getting the ball right back, and some good setup passes by Brayden Fowler-Nicolosi, Roberts ran in from 30-yards out to give him his third tally in the second quarter. Frisco scored once more right before the end of the half to take it to the locker room at 28-14.
In the second half, the passing game was opened up more. Despite not throwing for a touchdown, Fowler-Nicolosi was instrumental to the Bearcats all game as he threw for 12 completions on 17 attempts for 198 yards.
“Our whole game plan was trying to stay balanced,” Fowler-Nicolosi spoke on the opening of the passing game. “I got a little hurt at one point but my line still did a great job blocking so we were able to open it up more.”
Roberts scored again on a 23-yard run midway through the third quarter. After a big interception by BJ Allen, Clay Murador nailed a 21 yard field goal to make the third quarter score 35-14. The Raccoons scored twice in the fourth quarter but Earle’s touchdown in the last six minutes sealed the win for the Bearcats.
“It feels great,” Allen said about the prospect of playing on New Years Eve. “There’s still football going on. First we all thought that we weren’t going to get to play football, but we’re just happy we played football today.”
The Bearcats move on the Regional Final round where they will face the Lucas-Lovejoy Leopards at 11 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 31, at Globe Life Park in Arlington.