Cedar Park overcomes late rally by Manvel 52-42

MANVEL — It was an uphill struggle for Manvel throughout the first three quarters in their Class 5A Region III Div. I final against Cedar Park (13-0).

Trailing 14-7 after the first quarter and 35-21 at halftime, the Mavs fought back to trail 38-35 at the end of three periods.

With 11:50 left in the game, Manvel finally took a 42-38 lead after senior QB Gabriel Larry scored on a 23-yard keeper after breaking a tackle.

However, the fourth-ranked Timberwolves scored the last 14 points to send the Mavericks to a 52-42 loss in the 5A Division I Region III final at Merrill Green Stadium.

“Overall, we didn’t play well in the first half,” Manvel head coach Kevin Hall said. “I told them, ‘Just give me one thing, and that’s come out here and fight.’ And they did. Our kids have fought all year long. We’ve had kids with surgeries and they’re out and schedule changes. They’ve endured everything, and they’ve never wavered.”

After Cedar Park jumped out to a 14-0 lead in the opening stanza, Manvel cut the lead in half when junior RB Ty Harris score on a 23-yard dash with just 32 seconds left in the first to make the score 14-7.

The Timberwolves added three score in the second quarter while Manvel could only score twice.

Harris added his second touchdown on a 54-yard scoring jaunt with 7:54 left in the second and Larry found senior WR Jalen Walthall on a 22-yard scoring strike with 1:46 left in the first half.

The Mavs outscored the Timberwolves in the third 14-3 as De'monte Seymore scored on a 2-yard run with 5:57 remaining in the third and Walthall and Larry hooked up on a 26-yard scoring pass with 3:52 left in the period to cut the margin to 38-35 entering the final quarter.

However, the Mavs couldn't stop the potent passing attack of the Timberwolves quarterback Ryder Hernandez who was 29-of-55 passing for 381 yards and four touchdowns. Senior receivers Jack Hestera (4-112) and Josh Cameron (10-107) both went for over 100 yards receiving.

Cedar Park score twice in the final seven minutes to post the 52-42 final score to end the season for the Mavs at 9-2.

Larry was 6-of-21 passing for 123 yards for two TDs and one INT. He also had 38 rushing on seven carries and one score.

Seymore had 18 carries for 123 yards and one TD while Harris had 18 totes for 123 yards and two scores.

Walthall had three catches for 76 yards and two TDs.

“Cedar Park’s a great team,” Hall said. “We didn’t win this game, but there is no tarnishing this season. This football team is phenomenal, and there’s a bunch of young kids playing and a bunch of hurt ones coming back next year. We’re gonna start the offseason next week, and we’re moving forward.”