ALVARADO — The Celeste Blue Devils’ football playoff run came to a screeching halt Friday night as the No. 4-ranked Crawford Pirates ran away with a 50-14 Class 2A-I area round championship at Charles Head Stadium.
Celeste’s season ended with an 8-3 record.
Crawford (12-0) advances to the regional quarterfinals to face 10-2 Italy at 2 p.m. on Friday, also at Charles Head Stadium. Italy beat Alvord, 56-21, in the area round.
It took the Pirates only two plays on their first possession to jump out to a 6-0 lead with 10:05 left in the first quarter. Junior quarterback Luke Torbet connected with junior wide receiver Camron Walker for 28 yards on the Pirates first play, giving Crawford the ball at the Celeste 8-yard line. Junior running back Breck Chambers scored the first of his four touchdowns on the next play. Chambers scored on runs of 8, 54, 7 and 10 yards.
Torbert slipped through the hands of a Celeste defender and turned what looked to be a sure loss before escaping and running for 46 yards and another Pirate touchdown. Chambers kicked the extra-point and Crawford led 20-0 with 1:55 left in the first quarter. The Pirates upped their lead to 23-0 with a 24-yard field goal by Chambers. Torbert was sidelined with a reported hip injury on the play. He did not return to the game and his status for the next game is unknown.
Blue Devil senior running back Jawonte Stephens scored on a 16-yard run with 3:20 left in the first half. Anthony Powell added the extra-point to cut the Pirates lead to 23-7 with 3:20 left in the first half.
It took the Pirates only one play to shatter any hopes of a Celeste comeback as Torbert and Walker teamed up for a 60-yard pass and tun touchdown. The Pirates led 30-7 at the half.
The Pirates added three touchdowns in the third quarter, including a 39-yard interception return for a touchdown, upping the Crawford lead to 50-7.
Stephens scored on a 12-yard run with 0:36 left in the third quarter. The final Celeste scoring drive covered 70 yards in seven plays. Powell’s PAT made the final score 50-14.
The Pirates had 409 yards rushing and 95 passing for 504 yards total offense. Chambers finished with 100 yards on eight carries.
Celeste, led by Jawonte Stephens, ran 33 times for 141 yards. Stephens finished with 71 yards and two touchdowns on 14 carries.
Junior quarterback Michael Connelly was 10-of-of 23 passing for 114 yards and three interceptions. Junior receiver Qua Stephens grabbed three passes for 54 yards. Jawonte Stephens caught three passes for 32 yards while Ky Drennon caught two for 15 yards and Holden Lamm added one catch for 12 yards.
The Blue Devils finished with 255 yards offense, running for 141 yards and passing for 114.