Area Round Preview: Dragons vs DeSoto
Nov 22, 2017 09:32AM
● By Mike
A familiar opponent stands in the way of Carroll’s first third-round appearance in the playoffs since 2014 when the Dragons take on DeSoto Saturday at The Star in Frisco.
The reigning state champs eliminated the Dragons in the area round a year ago, 48-30, and enter this matchup with a 10-1 record with the lone loss coming to state-ranked Duncanville.
The Eagles are ranked No. 10 themselves and are seeking a second straight appearance in the third round.
Typically a high-powered offensive team, the Eagles struggled with the ball in the loss Duncanville (14 points) as well as in a 17-14 win over South Grand Prairie but seem to find their rhythm last week in the bi-district round with a 44-10 win over Copperas Cove.
Courtney Douglas has started the last two games under center for DeSoto and enters the contest with 1,600 passing yards (61 completion percentage) with 12 touchdowns against two interceptions. He is a threat in the running game as well with 363 rushing yards and seven touchdowns.
The Eagles have used a committee on the ground throughout the 2017 campaign with six rushers with at least 300 yards and five touchdowns apiece headlined by Dylan Lawrence (565 yards, 8.1 per carry, five scores) and Houson commit Kelan Walker (498 yards, 6.2 per carry, seven touchdowns).
At receiver, three-star junior recruit La’Vontae Shenault (46 receptions, 676 yards, six touchdowns), Arkansas commit Byron Hanspard (33 catches, 475 yards, two touchdowns) and Jamal Brown (15 receptions, 306 yards, five touchdowns) all possess big-play ability.
Overall, the Eagles have averaged 35.7 points and 402 yards per game.
Carroll’s offense, meanwhile, comes in boasting averages of 36.7 points and 445 yards per game and faces a stingy DeSoto defense unit surrendering just 14 points and 250 yards per game.
Tyler Jackson paces the unit with 102 tackles and four sacks, while Gemon Green (Michigan) has three interceptions and a fumble recovery.