ROYSE CITY — Big plays, bigger mistakes, overtime and high drama were all on the docket Thursday night in what could be considered a contender for “Game of the Year” as Leonard and Edgewood faced off in a Class 2A Division II bi-district football playoff game at Royse City ISD Stadium.
Leonard (8-3) forced overtime with a fumble recovery and — after scoring on the first play of its overtime possession — recovered another to put an end to a thrilling contest that moves the Tigers into the second round with a 43-36 win over the Bulldogs (8-3).
Edgewood’s Carlos Bolton rushed for 247 yards but appeared to lose the ball on both crucial fumbles without being touched by a Leonard defender. Cody Crane recovered the loose ball in overtime after Justin Bennett (136 rushing yards, 3 TDs) scored from the 25 on the first play of the extra period.
The Tigers erased a 15-point deficit with a little more than two minutes left in the third on Bennett’s touchdown runs of two and seven yards, respectively. Solomon Titus added 175 yard on 19 carries for the Tigers, who gained 346 total yards and took advantage of five Edgewood turnovers and numerous penalties.
The Bulldogs gained 471 total yards — 346 on the ground — but put the ball on the ground seven times, losing three. Jackson Tyner rushed for 102 yards and passed for 125 with a pair of rushing scores, but was picked off twice and lost a fumble.
MOUNT PLEASANT — Atlanta jumped out to a 33-0 halftime lead and then held on for a 46-15 Class 3A Division II bi-district football victory over the Rains Wildcats on Thursday.
Rains, which was 0-10 last season, finished at 4-7.
Atlanta, now 7-4, advances to the area round to face Gladewater, a 48-0 winner over Canton.
Quarterback Chase Musgrove went 10-of-17 passing for 179 yards and two touchdowns to lead Atlanta. Jace Flowers caught two of those passes for 75 yards.
Running back DaQuan Allen ran for 142 yards and a pair of scores on eight carries.
Nick Grell set up Rains’ first touchdown with a fumble recovery returned to the Atlanta 11. Quarterback Ryan Ratliff then ran in from the 1-yard line for the score and passed to Adam Perez for the two-point conversion.
Dakota Mills scored the Wildcats’ second touchdown on a 7-yard run. Rogelio Perez booted the conversion.
Ratliff was 2-of-8 passing for 23 yards and rushed for 54 yards on 14 carries.
Jesse Hudson led the Rains rushers with 77 yards on 18 carries as Rains finished with 247 total yards.
Atlanta wound up with 460 total yards.