After two years of thrashing teams, Mildred had to know teams would treasure a chance at redemption. Tolar became the first to cash in.
The Rattlers embarrassed Mildred, 49-0, Friday at Asby Field, piling up 528 yards of offense and avenging a 56-18 loss on their home turf a year ago. Mildred played without all-state back and safety Draylon Sterling for the most part, and when he was in an ankle injury rendered him basically ineffective.
A healthy Sterling may not have stemmed the tide much, as both teams saw their records move to 5-2, 3-1 in District 6-2A DII.
Tolar’s lone loss came last week, 41-14, to Scurry-Rosser in a game in which the Rattlers trailed 41-0 before getting on the board. Scurry-Rosser is undefeated and rolling, beating Blooming Grove 54-21 Friday after trailing, 21-20, at the half.
Mildred beat Scurry-Rosser in the season finale last year, 83-0.
Russell Holden was one of the few bright spots for the Eagles, as the sophomore wide receiver moved to running back in the second half and rushed for 137 of his 166 yards in the final 24 minutes. Sterling carried only three times for nine yards, and the Eagles had only 181 yards total and seven first downs. One of those came by Tolar penalty.
It was a night of growing pains for sophomore quarterback Will Burnham, who was only 1-of-15 passing for 14 yards. He was under pressure all night long, and two weeks after registering his first 100-yard game on the ground, he totaled minus-23 on five carries.
Tolar, which returned Cory Solomon from last year’s game, often looked like a passing team. The Rattlers ran and passed with equal effectiveness at Asby. Corbin Wood threw for 188 yards and four touchdowns, three to Garrett Winston — one in each of the first three quarters as Tolar tallied 14 points in each quarter.
Wood added 91 yards on 10 carries, and his 12-yard scramble on third-and-11 set the tone for the game. Instead of a three-and-out to start the night, Tolar rallied on a drive that ended with a 4-yard Winston touchdown pass.
Solomon managed 99 yards on 21 carries, and scored on a 6-yard run to make it 14-0 late in the first.
Mildred lost a district game for the first time since Nov. 5, 2010, a 33-7 loss at Lone Oak in that season’s finale. The shutout was the first since Sept. 4, 2009, a span of 57 games. Mildred lost at Hillsboro, 22-0.
Ironically, it was Hillsboro that last shut the Eagles out at home, 30-0, on Sept. 7, 2007, Joe Drennon’s final year at Mildred.
In 2011 and 2012, seasons that saw Mildred go 26-3 and advance to the state semifinals and play for a state title last year, Mildred averaging winning by a margin of 53.9 points in 19 regular season wins. Only one was by less than 29 points, and 14 were by 42 points or more.
The Eagles had two promising drives Friday, one set up by a 34-yard Mikey Muncy kick return. Already down 14-0, Holden fumbled inside the Tolar 20 to turn the ball over.
Early in the fourth, with the game already in hand with Tolar ahead 42-0, Holden ran 63 yards to the Tolar 5. But a sack, a run for a loss and an incompletion had the Eagles settling for a Devin O’Sullivan 39-yard field goal attempt. It was blocked.
Sterling did not have shoulder pads on at the coin toss, and did not play the first and fourth quarters.
Tolar 49, Mildred 0
Tolar 14 14 14 7 — 49
Mildred 0 0 0 0 — 0
T — Garrett Winston 4 pass from Corbin Wood (Garrett Winston kick), 8:20
T — Cory Solomon 6 run (Winston kick), 3:42
T — Gordon Lewis 1 run (Winston kick), 7:18
T — Winston 21 pass from Wood (Winston kick), 5:10
T — Blake Watson 61 pass from Wood (Winston kick), 8:56
T — Winston 35 pass from Wood (Winston kick), 4:44
T — Marcus Garcia 20 run (Winston kick), 5:48
First downs 24 7
Rush-yards 47-276 23-167
Passing yards 252 14
C-A-I 15-21-1 1-15-0
Fumbles-lost 2-1 1-1
Punts-avg. 2-27 8-34
Penalties-yards 7-45 9-85
Rushing — T: Cory Solomon 21-99, Corbin Wood 10-91, Dakota Endsley 4-22, Marcus Garcia 4-29, Nathan Langston 3-19, Heston Buckalew 1-(-3), Gordon Lewis 1-1, Garrett Winston 1-16, Team 2-(-8). M: Draylon Sterling 3-9, Mikey Muncy 6-20, Hunter Freeman 5-0, Will Burnham 5-(-23), Joey Palos 1-(-1), Russell Holden 12-166, Team 1-(-4).
Passing — T: Wood 10-19-1-183, Endsley 5-7-0-69. M: Burnham 1-15-0-14.
Receiving — T: Dalton Shaw 5-50, Blake Watson 1-61, Winston 3-60, Conner Robinson 1-15, Garcia 1-16, Endsley 1-12, Rodie Brister 2-12, Buckalew 1-21. M: Muncy 1-14.