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October 16, 2009

Garland wins defensive struggle

GARLAND - Needing 1 victory to get their 80th victory of this decade, Garland (3-0, 6-1) won in a way that nobody thought possible. While they held Rowlett (0-3, 1-6) to 190 yards of offense, they themselves struggled, amassing only 201 yards.

Garland opened up the game out of the wildcat - their newly implemented formation led by Senior WR, Adrian Phillips. Before punting on their first possession, the Owl's first two snaps were out of the wildcat and Phillips was stuffed for a combined loss of 2.

There were 3 punts to open the game. On Garland's second punt attempt, the snap was high and through the hands of the punter. While trying to gain control of the loose ball, he ran out of bounds resulting in a safety and a 2-0 Eagle lead nine minutes and 8 seconds into the game.

With 8:10 remaining in the first half, Garland took over possession after kick-catch interference on their 30 yard line. Five consecutive first downs later, Jordan Spencer took the carry up the middle into the end zone for the 1 yard score, giving the Owls their first lead of the game 7-2. That drive only took five plays and 1:23 off the clock. The touchdown run was set up by a perfect pass from Jared Barnett to Stephen Ford over the middle for 29 yards. Their shortest play from scrimmage was 12 yards during that drive.

There was not another score in the game until Rowlett put up a 11 play, 41 yard drive resulting in a 39 yard field goal by Chase Thrasher to cut Garland's lead to 7-5 with 1:28 remaining in the 3rd quarter.

Attempting to add to the Owl's lead, Eduardo Barajas attempted his second field goal of the night at the 9:11 mark of the 4th quarter. The 25 yard attempt was wide left. Earlier in the game his 48 yard attempt had the distance, but was wide right.

Coming up big in the heat of the moment was Malcolm Robinson, DB. As Rowlett was driving Robinson intercepted a Grant Bothun pass and returned it 30 yards down inside the Rowlett 10 yard line. Garland however decided it was more opportunistic to move backwards. Back to back penalties resulted in a 1st and goal from the 21 yard line. Trying to connect in the end zone, Rowlett was called for pass interference on a questionable play. Replay showed that the ball had already hit the ground out of bounds. The refs stuck with their call as unfortunately they cannot use instant replay and on 1st and goal from the 6, Phillips took the snap out of the wildcat and punched it in for the 6 yard touchdown to give Garland the 14-5 lead with 7:28 to go.

Both teams went for it on 4th down on their next possessions. Both were unsuccessful and with 4:06 to go Rowlett lined up for their last drive of the game. After working their way across midfield, Bothun lobbed up a pass to a receiver on the left side. The receiver was streaking, and Bothun threw the pass as if he were supposed to cut in. Robinson caught the pass for his second interception of the night, sealing the victory for the Owls, 14-5, as they were able to run out the clock to end the game.






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