By Todd Wills
Corsicana Daily Sun
Frost needed one last great defensive play to keep their season alive Friday night.
The Polar Bears, a bunch of them, delivered.
With Chilton at the Frost 13 with seven seconds left and the Pirates standout quarterback Javarius Young injured on the previous play, the Polar Bears still had to stop a running play. Chilton's Kyondris Landrum took off around the left end and made it to the Frost 5, where he was destroyed by Frost's Woody Woods and Robert Worley.
That preserved a thrilling 16-12 victory for the Polar Bears in a Region III-1A DII Area round playoff game on Friday night at Groesbeck Goat Stadium.
Frost (11-1) advances to play the Mount Enterprise-Maud winner and advances past the second round of the playoff for the first time since 1989.
"It was a great effort by our guys," Frost coach Eric Blenden said. "They've busted their tails off all year long."
The Polar Bears' defense, which had to step up, delivered, holding a Chilton team that beat them 52-0 last season to 184 yards. Frost, trying to hang on for a victory, had to stop Chilton with Pirates 65 yards away from a comeback win with 1:30 left.
Chilton worked it down inside the Frost 20 despite two holding penalties -- one that wiped out a touchdown -- and a shaky personal foul call on Frost. Chilton had a first-and-10 at the Frost 12 with 14 seconds left.
That's when Young, who had 136 yards, but who threatened to make big plays all night, was injured while losing a yard, tackled out of bounds by Julius Gray and Cody Campbell as he tried to scramble.
That put Landrum, the Pirates' starting running back, in a position to where he had to play quarterback on the game's last play. The Pirates' coaches put the ball in hands, and Frost stopped him with a jarring hit in the shadow of their own goal line.
"It was a great defensive night for us," Frost quarterback/safety Jacob Stroder said. "We had to be more physical than them and we were."
On a night when Frost came into the game as an underdog, the Polar Bears played like the better team. They scored on their first drive, going 75 yards in 6 minutes and a second to take an 8-0 lead. Woods scored on a 14-yard screen pass from Stroder and Danial Steels scored on a two-point conversion.
Chilton answered the score as Young, on a fourth-and-7 at the Frost 10, was able to take off running and score a touchdown to make it 8-6 Frost with 3:23 left in the first quarter.
Frost's defense made two key stops to start the third quarter, setting up the offense with a chance to take a two-score lead.
Frost took advantage of two 15 yards penalties on Chilton that turned into first downs and took a 16-6 lead on an 8-yard touchdown run by Steels followed by another two-point conversion.
Chilton answered in the fourth quarter with 6:34 left on Cole Thigpen's 4-yard touchdown run. Frost's offense answered, taking five crucial minutes off and getting down to the Chilton 24 before the drive stalled with 1:25 left.
It put the pressure on the Frost defense and they came through with a wipe out play.
"We needed to make a play," Blenden said, "And we did it."
Frost 16, Chilton 12
Frost 8 0 0 8 -- 16
Chilton 6 0 0 6 -- 12
F -- Woody Woods 14 pass from Jacob Stroder (Danial Steels run), 5:59
C -- Javarius Young 10 run (pass failed), 3:23
F -- Steels 8 run (Steels run), 6:06
C -- Cole Thigpen 4 run (pass failed), 6:34
First downs 17 10
Rush-yards 41-201 30-173
Passing yards 69 11
C-A-I 3-5-0 1-4-1
Fumbles-lost 0-0 2-0
Punts-avg. 2-34 3-33
Penalties-yards 3-25 6-70
Rushing -- F: Danial Steels 19-96, Robert Worley 8-66, Woody Woods 6-23, Jacob Stroder 8-17, Cade Rigamonti 1-3. C: Javarius Young 21-136, Cole Thigpen 3-20, Kyondris Landrum 1-12, Norvell Alston 5-5.
Passing -- F: Stroder 3-5-0-69. C: Young 1-4-1-11.
Receiving -- Josh Riojas 1-35, Cody Campbell 1-20, Woods 1-14. C: Landrum 1-11.