Playoff Bound Dragons Meet Buffalos
Oct 30, 2014 11:55AM ● Published by Mike
Safety Kevin Cramer (18) is carried away by teammates after a late game interception vs Euless Trinity.
By EJ Holland
Southlake Carroll knows a thing or two about the playoffs.
After all, the Dragons have eight state titles under their belts and will have a chance to add a ninth to the trophy case this December. Southlake Carroll officially locked up a playoff spot with a 45-23 victory overColleyville Heritage last week.
But head coach Hal Wasson doesn’t want that or a fun-filled Halloween night to distract from the task at hand — winning an outright district title.
“It’s very exciting to know that we’re in the playoffs again. I’m really proud of our kids. They invested a lot of time,” Wasson said. “But it’s a tough league, and we have to finish the deal. We’re extremely excited, but I told them that our goal is to win an outright district championship.”
Southlake Carroll currently sits at 8-0 and 4-0 in District 7-6A play. Next up on the slate: Haltom The Buffalos are winless and are currently in last place with an 0-8 overall record and 0-4 district mark.
Wasson, however, knows the Dragons can’t get overconfident. Haltom will certainly be motivated to notch its first victory and pull off the biggest upset in the state.
“You just have to keep it simple. We always say that our next game is our biggest game, so that’s how we stay focused,” Wasson said. “We have to continue to get better and be at our best. If we’re not at our best, anything can happen.”
Haltom, which is coming off a 39-22 loss to L.D. Bell, is averaging a mere 9.8 points this season. To put that into perspective, Southlake Carroll has scored almost four times as many points as the Buffalos (299-78). Simply put: Haltom has trouble moving the football. But the Buffalos do have a dangerous ball carry in speedy running back Hector Vasquez.
Defensively, it doesn’t get much better for the Buffalos. Haltom is allowing 37.3 points per game and has been awful against both the run and the pass. As long as the Dragons keep defensive lineman Joseph Banks at bay, the Dragons should be able to light up the scoreboard.
“They run the ball about 60 percent of the time, so we have to play physical,” Wasson said. “We also have to be more effective throwing the football. Our special teams need to do better, especially on kickoff returns.”
Wasson also added that he expects the home crowd at Dragon Stadium to give the team an extra boost.
“I just want to say that our students and fans have been great,” Wasson said. “The players have been commenting on it, so I just wanted to mention it. We have great support.”