Oh so close.
That’s the way it looked.
That’s the way it felt when the ball just got past Danair Martin in the left corner of the end zone, skipping past his fingertips.
It was there and then it wasn’t. The pass was just that close.
Just like this season seems to be for Corsicana’s near miss Tigers, who just missed again Friday night in a 48-41 loss to Nacogdoches, which has emerged as one of the biggest surprises in all of Class 4A football in Texas.
The Tigers almost emerged Friday.
They climbed out of a 21-0 hole, knotted things at 21-21, and then had to come back again when Nacogdoches went up 34-21.
No problem. Corsicana can score with just about anyone and wouldn’t you know it, the Tigers tied it again at 41-41 with 8:24 left in the game when Donavan Fields ran for his fourth touchdown of the night, a 25-yarder that had the homecoming crowd on its feet.
But the Dragons, who came back from an 0-10 season a year ago to shock all of high school football with a 6-1 start, had one more drive in them.
And when Corsicana shoved them back to the Nacogdoches 34 and a third-and-18 play, quarterback Bryce Matthews, who ran for four TDs and threw three touchdown passes, hit Tae Thomas over he middle for a 25-yard gain to keep the drive alive. It ended with a 9-yard TD pass from Matthews to Thomas that lifted Nacogdoches to a 48-41 lead with 5:43 left.
The Tigers stormed back one more time and drove to the Dragon 26, but on a fourth-and-12, Devontay Bell’s would-be touchdown pass to Martin in the left corner of the end zone was just a bit too long -- just out of Martin’s reach .
Bell had a remarkable game, running for 190 yards and two touchdowns. He gave Corsicana the spark it needed early in the second quarter when he took off for a 40-yard run to the Nacogdoches 19 to set up Fields’ first TD of the night, a 2-yard payday into the end zone with 10:20 left in the half that seemed to serve notice.
The Dragons (6-1 and now 2-0 in District 16-4A) scored three quick TDs in the first quarter to go up 21-0 and it looked like it might be a rout.
But Corsicana, even without its sensational tailback Tray Owens, who is out with an ankle injury, knows how to move the football. The Tigers have been moving the ball and scoring all season.
They kept moving on Friday. Bell raced for an 11-yard run and then Fields scored on a 13-yard dash to tie it at 21 with 1:26 left in the half.
But Matthews, who completed 11 of 18 passes for 155 yards in the first half, hit Red Watson for a 31-yarder and then found Watson for 11 more to the 5-yard line, and then carried the ball twice, scoring on a 1-yard run with 0:08 left in the half to break the tie.
The Tigers were less than a yard short on a fourth-and-1 play at the Dragon 27 on their first series in the second half, and Matthews answered with a 53-yard TD run. Cana came back again, driving 65 yards in 11 pays and closed to 34-27 on Fields’ 3-yard TD run. Matthews ran for a 10-yard touchdown and Bell answered with an 18-yard TD run of his own and the two teams went to the fourth with Nacogdoches hanging to a 41-34 lead.
It stayed that way until Fields scored with 8:24 left, but Matthews had an answer, and when Corsicana came back again, but the ball slipped just past Martin -- just that close.
Oh so close.
GC Softball: Playoff Time
There were some bumps on the road and slides in the standings and a few bruises along the way, but five Golden Circle teams have reached the softball playoffs that begin with first round games on Thursday.
For Corsicana it was a wakeup call during the second half of district play that gave the Tigers the push they needed, and for Mildred it was the culmination of yet another splendid season as the Lady Eagles made the playoffs for the fifth straight season. Blooming Grove is back again, a regular in post season play with a chance to make a run, and Hubbard begins its quest to get to the state tournament and Austin with a one-game playoff on Thursday against Itasca in Italy.
Navarro Softball: Bulldogs split with Kilgore, win final home game
Kristen Ahearn was mad, steaming.
Even her peanut butter and jelly sandwich that she ate between the doubleheader games didn't taste good. Nothing fit. Nothing was in sync. Nothing felt right or even tasted right.
Then Ahearn found the cure.
Simple enough: Just go out and blast a three-run homer.
That's the short version of what happened Tuesday at Navarro College, where Ahearn's three-run bomb ignited the Bulldogs in the second game against Kilgore and Navarro went on to win 8-5 to close out its regular season with a bang and a smile from Ahearn.
GC Baseball: Kerens beats Cayuga 5-1, wins first district title since 1981
The wait is over.
And it came just in time for Brett Anderson, who left it all on the mound Tuesday night at Kerens, where he pitched a masterpiece to lead the Bobcats over Cayuga, 5-1, and help the program win its first baseball district title since 1981.
“I've got no gas left. I'm out,'' said Anderson, a senior lefty who stopped Cayuga cold, holding the three-time defending district champs to just three singles while striking out 14.
GC Basebal Roundup: Corsicana blasts Jacksonville; BG wins huge district game
The Corsicana Tigers wrapped up district play with a dominating 9-0 win over the Jacksonville Indians behind Trevor Nolen, who shut out the Indians and allowed only one hit over 6 1/3 innings. Donovan Fields came on to retire the final two hitters. The Tiger pitchers limited the Indians to only 25 plate appearances in the game and no runner to reach third base.
Rodeo: Navarro County Derrick Days -- Burton is back
Professional rodeo entertainer Ronald Burton returns to the Navarro County Exposition Center April 25-26 to entertain the crowd at the 2014 Navarro County Derrick Days Pro Rodeo.
Huggins to call shots at Derrick Days Rodeo
West Huggins will serve as the announcer for the 2014 Navarro County Derrick Days Pro rodeo. The Gardendale native is the reigning three-time United Professional Rodeo Association Announcer of the Year.
Dill gets 300th win in Navarro baseball sweep of Bossier Parish
Navarro baseball’s weekend in Louisiana was significant on a number of fronts. On one hand, coach Whoa Dill notched his 300th win. On the other, and perhaps more importantly, the Bulldogs simply continued to play well. The Bulldogs swept Bossier Parish to move 14-11 in Region XIV East Zone play, and 27-17 overall.
Mildred sending five to regional track meet
Sasha Ballard set a school record in the 800 meters and paced a contingent of five Mildred thinclads heading to Stephenville for the regionals later this week.
Kerens boys grab four gold medals at area track meet
Tavion Hall and Jalon Moss each snared a pair of gold medals as Kerens boys finished second at their area track meet last week with 88 points.
Area schedule for the week
Here's a look at this week's schedule for Golden Ciircle teams and Navarro College. The schedule does not include upcoming bi-district playoff games in softball because times and sites have yet to be determined.
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- GC Softball: Playoff Time