The Port Arthur News
HOUSTON – Once again, the Nederland football team will be looking to put an end to perfection. The Bulldogs’ next playoff opponent is undefeated Georgetown, though these Eagles took a slightly different path than last week’s 12-0 Dawson team.
Georgetown never quite made it into the Associated Press Top 10 this year, but hovered just on the edges. In the final poll of the season, when Nederland ranked No. 5, Georgetown got 15 votes to finish 13th.
That’s despite the Eagles breezing through much of their schedule this season. Georgetown finished the regular season with a victory margin of 38.1 points per game. That number is skewed a bit by a 73-0 victory against Cedar Ridge, but not by much. The closest game Georgetown had in the regular season was a 27-6 victory over Killeen Ellison in Week Zero.
That regular season schedule featured three non-district opponents that finished a combined 3-27. Still, Georgetown continued its dominance in the playoffs, beating Magnolia 44-18 in bidistrict, Humble Summer Creek 38-21 in the area round and taking down Angleton 49-39 in the regional round last week.
Against Angleton, Georgetown scored at least 40 points for the ninth time in 13 games. The Eagles are averaging 421 yards of offense per game this season, passing for over 3,000 yards and rushing for over 2,200.
Quarterback Jake Hubenak leads the offense, completing 64 percent of his passes on 296 passing attempts this season. The senior has thrown for 3,210 yards with 42 touchdowns and eight interceptions this season. He’s also rushed for 296 yards and five TDs while going a perfect 17-0 in varsity starts in his career. Hubenak started four games last season before suffering a torn ACL against Del Valle that caused him to miss the rest of the campaign.
Hubenak is more of a pure pocket passer than any quarterback Nederland has faced this season, and that passing means that the Eagles have three different receivers with at least 10 TD catches. Ryan Bedford leads the way with 56 catches for 1,000 yards and 13 TDs. Randy Knighter actually leads the team in catches with 59 for 973 yards and 10 TDs. Austin Weston rounds out the group with 43 catches for 835 yards and 13 TDs.
Georgetown head coach Jason Dean is in his fourth year with the team. Dean went 1-9 in his first season with the Eagles, but improved his win total each season since then. Dean is now 25-19 in his career as a head coach and is making his second appearance in the playoffs. The Eagles lost to Austin Bowie in 2010 in his only other trip to the playoffs.
Previously, Dean served as offensive coordinator at Georgetown and the offensive line coach before that. He also was an assistant coach at Abilene and graduated from McMurry University.
Georgetown has played football since 1909, but is still searching for its first trip to the state semifinals.