• Photo by Lisa deCordova/Special to The Groesbeck Journal
    Groesbeck runner Brandyn Canaday (21) gets a block from teammate Dylan Rand (15) to pick up good yardage during the Goats bi-district playoff game with the Franklin Lions last Thursday night at Groesbeck Stadium
  • Photo by Lisa deCordova/Special to The Groesbeck Journal
    Goat defenders Brayden Bradley (10) and Zachary Neumann (25) converge on Franklin Lion’s running back Clayton Rosprim (38) for the tackle, during Thursday evening’s bi-district playoff game at Groesbeck Stadium.
  • Photo by Lisa deCordova/Special to The Groesbeck Journal
    Groesbeck kicker Dylan Rand (15) attempts an extra-point while Tyrique Carter (1) holds the ball, during the Goats bi-district game against the Franklin Lions last Thursday evening at home.
  • Photo by Lisa deCordova/Special to The Groesbeck Journal
    The Goats Jake Pringle (24) holds on to Franklin’s Rashawn Green (7) for the tackle, during last Thursday night’s bi-district playoff game at Groesbeck Stadium.
  • Photo by Lisa deCordova/Special to The Groesbeck Journal
    Goat running back Tyrique Carter (1) gets a block from offensive lineman Bradley Mushinski (54) during Groesbeck’s bi-district game with Franklin last Thursday night at home.
  • Photo by Lisa deCordova/Special to The Groesbeck Journal
    Groesbeck quarterback Ty Hale (7) makes the throw to one of his receivers during game action of last Thursday’s bi-district playoff with the Franklin Lions. Hale not only set a new school record for completions (48), but also tied a state high school football record for second place on all-time list.

Goats put up a hard fight against Lions in bi-district playoff game

By Stephen R. Farris, Sports Editor

The Groesbeck Goats football season came to a close last Thursday night at Groesbeck Stadium, but the team fought thick and thin to the very end as they fell to the Franklin Lions, 63-49, in the Class 3A Division I, Region III bi-district playoff game.

“We came up short the other night,” said second year Groesbeck head football coach Steve Hale, recapping the game over the weekend. “But it wasn’t for lack of effort and heart. They practice hard and do everything we ask them to do through the course of the season … truly a class act. I’ve never enjoyed myself more than I have this year!”

In Thursday’s game, Franklin stuck to running the ball all game long, breaking the scoring ice early in the first quarter when fullback Clayton Rosprim slipped into the end zone from three yards out, followed by C.J. Smith’s extra-point the Lions led 7-0.

On the ensuing kickoff, Groesbeck’s Tyrique Carter made a seven-yard return to the Goat 24. From there, Groesbeck put together a strong drive, utilizing short passing routes which ended with a 10-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Ty Hale to Carter. Dylan Rand kicked the extra-point and the game was tied 7-7 with 7:28 remaining in the opening quarter.

The Goats defense held strong, forcing Franklin to punt the ball after making it just inside Groesbeck territory.

Pressure on the Lions’ punter forced him to shank the ball off the side of his foot, with the ball landing about six yards from the line of scrimmage, which gave the Goats great field position on their next offensive series.

Hale took to the air hitting Rand on a 28-yard pass play to the Franklin 32, followed by a nine-yard reception by Ethan Davis and a four-yard catch by Rand that put the Goats just inside the Lion red zone.

A little miscommunication on the next play resulted in Franklin’s Rashawn Green coming up with an interception at the nine-yard line.

The Lions - with the ball - put together an eight play, 91-yard drive that finished with half-back Jared Pedraza scoring on an 18-yard rushing play near the end of the first quarter.

After the Goats went four and out, Franklin started the second quarter with the ball.

The Lions - staying true to their run game - went six plays for 65 yards, with Rosprim scoring a short yardage touchdown from the three-yard line to put Franklin up 21-7.

On the kickoff, Groesbeck’s Ameer Lee caught the ball at his own 21 and returned it to the 39-yard line where the Goats went to work on offense.

On second down and 10, Hale threw a seven-yard swing pass to Lee making it third and three at the Goats 45.

The very next play, Hale found a wide-open Grant Johnson, who slipped through a few Lion defenders, picking up some great blocking by his teammates and ran the ball all the way to the Franklin one-yard line, setting up first and goal.

The Goats were hit with a penalty on the next play, forcing them back to the 10-yard line, but an eight-yard reception by Davis and a one-yard run by Lee set up the touchdown by Carter from a yard out.

To read more of this story, pick up a copy of Thursday's edition of The Groesbeck Journal! You can also subscribe online or call 254-729-5103.

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