Shadow Creek slips past Friendswood 27-19

SHADOW CREEK — Shadow Creek may be in their first year of varsity competition, but so far no one has been able to stop them as they corralled Friendswood 27-19 in a District 10-5A-I showdown to improve to 7-0 overall and 4-0 in league action.

Friendswood was able to slow down the high-octane offense of the Sharks who entered the game averaging 51 points a game, but the results were still the same for a team that was a pre-season pick to finish sixth in their district and weren't considered a playoff team.

While the offense scored enough to win the game, the Sharks defense had to step up to preserve the win over the Mustangs at Henry Winston Stadium.

The Mustangs have now lost two in a row after starting out the season at 5-0. Friendswood is 5-2 overall and 2-2 in league play.

It was another game that Friendswood head coach Robert Koopmann looked at as one that got away.

"We left 14 points on the board, easily," Koopmann said. "But I'm going to tell you -- we physically got after them, and we pushed the ball around a little bit, running it.

"But they're so fast -- we're never going to be able to get in a track meet with them."

The plan for Friendswood was to sustain a consistent offense, drain time off the clock, keep Shadow Creek's potent offense off the field, and come away with some points.

The first Friendswood drive worked to perfection -- almost.

The Mustangs began their first possession with a 17-play, 71-yard drive and took 5:44 off the clock while Shadow Creek's offense could only watch. However, Friendswood's drive stopped sort of the end zone and was forced to attempt a 21-yard field goal which missed the mark leaving the game tied 0-0.

It took the Sharks just a minute to find the pay station as Shadow Creek quarterback Kyron Drones found speedster Kealon Jackson running past the Friendswood secondary for a 61-yard scoring bomb and a 7-0 lead with 5:07 left in the opening quarter.

The Friendswood defense stepped up to tie the game when Dane Roenne picked up a Shark fumble and dashed 18-yards for a touchdown. However, the PAT missed the mark leaving Shadow Creek with a slim 7-6 lead with 11:00 left in the second period.

The fast-scoring offense of the Sharks got in gear as running back Marquez Huland burned the Friendswood defense 75-yards on the first play following the ensuing kickoff to make the score 14-6 with 10:46 left in the second quarter.

The 14-6 score would stand at intermission.

With 5:22 left in the third stanza, it would be Friendswood taking advantage of a miscue by Shadow Creek after the Mustangs suffered an interception.

On the play, Shadow Creek linebacker Courtney Brown picked off Friendswood quarterback Luke Grden at the Sharks' goal line, returned it 15 yards and then fumbled. Friendswood wide receiver Alex Fluellen alertly picked up the loose ball and raced into the end zone for the score to cut the lead to 14-12. The Mustangs 2-point conversion failed.

But the quick scoring offense of the Sharks would strike twice in the final 3:38 of the third quarter when quarterback Jamarian George hit Jared Jackson on a 29-yard scoring pass and then found Carlton Guidry on a 59-yard bomb with 1:47 left in the third to push the lead to 27-12 for the Sharks.

Friendswood's offense finally scored in the fourth quarter when Luke Grden hit Zach Zamora on a 12-yard scoring toss with 9:17 left in the game to complete an 80-yard drive making the final score 27-19 following the PAT by Austin Alvarez.

"This is huge," Shadow Creek head coach Brad Butler said. "For us to not play real well and be able to hang in there and pull out a win, hopefully we learn and grow from this."

The same could be said regarding Friendswood as they had four drives stall inside the Shadow Creek red zone, scoring just one offensive touchdown.

Shadow Creek helped with a lost fumble, a poor punt snap and 134 yards in penalties.

Once again, Friendswood had a last chance in the final 1:59 but was unable to move the ball.

Grden was 16-of-30 passing for 137 yards with one TD and one INT.

Luke Revere had 33 carries for 131 yards.

Christian Lee had seven catches for 66 yards, Alvarez had four grabs for 34 yards, and Zamora had three catches for 27 yards and one TD.

Shadow Creek quarterback Jamarian George was 11-of-20 passing for 188 yards and two TDs. Drones was 4-of-5 passing for 84 yards and one score.

Huland was the game's leading rusher with 153 yards on 15 carries and one TD.

Kealon Jackson had five catches for 100 yards and one score. Jared Jackson had three grabs for 49 yards and a score. Guidry had two catches for 82 yards and a TD.

Friendswood will be looking to get back in the win column when they travel to face Hightower on Thursday, October 25 at 7:00 p.m. at Hall Stadium.

Shadow Creek will host Richmond Foster on Friday, October 26 at Freedom Field at 7:00 p.m.