Texas High School football state champions crowned, completing the 2017 fall season

By Stephen R. Farris, Sports Editor

The results have been tallied and in the books as the final games of the 2017 high school football season were played over the last week at AT&T Stadium in Arlington.

On the local level, the Mart Panthers came out on top over Refugio (13-1), 34-21, winning the Class 2A Division I title and their sixth football state championship in the school’s history.

Head coach Kevin Hoffman’s Panthers (15-1) trailed 14-0 at the end of the first quarter, but came back to score 28 unanswered points to win by 13.

Running back Shatydrick Bailey put Mart on the scoreboard early in the second quarter with a 44-yard touchdown run and went on to score two more times on a two-yard passing play from quarterback Jace Terry, then a one-yard run with 16 seconds remaining before the half to put the Panthers on top for the first time in the game.

In the third quarter, Terry hit receiver Jalon Kirven for a 29-yard score and it would be Terry capping off the win with a 64-yard, breaking tackles touchdown run with 6:24 remaining in the ball game.

Mart’s only loss of the season was to then highly ranked Lexington, 40-38, in Week 1, the most points this year’s Panther team would give up until the Refugio game.

After the opening game loss, Mart went on to average 56 points per win, including a string of four shutouts in a row over Itasca (69-0), Axtell (90-0), Riesel (53-0) and Italy (70-0), while the Panther defense gave up an average of 8.3.

Terry finished his senior season with 2,267 yards passing, completing 122 passes on 203 attempts and 33 touchdowns, while rushing for 1,018 yards on 127 carries and scored 18 TDs on the ground.

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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