5A DIVISION II: Speed unlimited: Buffs too fast for Indians to catch

Published 10:18 pm Friday, November 30, 2018

BAYTOWN — The same speed that helped Fort Bend Marshall win the UIL 5A state track and field championship was displayed on grass Friday night.

Marshall had four touchdown plays of 25 or more yards — including a 52-yard punt return — and Port Neches-Groves struggled to catch the undefeated Buffalos, who stampeded to a 53-14 victory in Stallworth Stadium on Friday night.

“Respect to them,” said PNG quarterback Roschon Johnson, who carried 19 times for 133 yards and a touchdown. “They played a great game. This wasn’t our night. The ball wasn’t rolling our way.”

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PNG (9-4) was stymied in the 5A Division II Region III semifinal round for the third straight year. The Indians, who had 10 or more wins each of the past two seasons, will try to make their first regional final in 20 seasons next year.

“They’re a championship team,” Indians coach Brandon Faircloth said. “Our guys were district champs (shared with Nederland), Bum Phillips Bowl champs, they were bi-district champs and they were area champs. What you tell them is how proud you are of them, and it didn’t go our way tonight, but that’s life.”

Faircloth had hoped to take away the run from the Buffalos (13-0), who averaged about 270 of their 405 total yards per game rushing the ball going into Friday. The Buffalos had 306 rushing yards and also benefited from the passing of junior Malik Hornsby, who went 7 of 13 for 210 yards and touchdown passes to Devon Achane and Dalevon Campbell. Hornsby started 4 for 4 in the process and had 182 passing yards at the half, four more than the Buffs had at the time.

“We made every adjustment we could, I promise you,” Faircloth said. “It’s one of those things where they were a better team tonight.”

Jerry Davis had three touchdown runs (37, 4 and 10 yards) and Hornsby ran for his second touchdown of the game to put the Buffs up 53-7. A 67-yard sprint by PNG senior Jaylan Williams, who finished with 106 yards on seven carries, narrowed that gap in the fourth quarter.

The Indians did not convert a first down until their third series, when they marched 42 yards in 13 plays. That drive ended on downs, however.

Marshall led 24-0 before PNG finally got on the board with Johnson’s 20-yard carry with 5:38 left before halftime. Johnson completed 10 of 23 passes for 81 yards before leaving to a standing ovation with 3:04 left in the game.

“It meant a lot,” Johnson said. “For it all to come to a close, it’s special, but I’m thankful for each and every person that’s been a part of this journey and part of this career. It’s been very special.”

“He’s a once-in-a-generation player,” Faircloth said. “We’re just so blessed to have him at PNG. He’s going to accomplish a lot of great things in life. Anytime you have a kid of that caliber, anytime you can send him out the right way, we want to do that. Roschon blessed us not only with great play but great leadership. We’re really proud of him.”


Injury report

PNG defensive lineman Don Trusclair was carted off with 4:10 left in the third quarter following Hornsby’s third touchdown. A cast was placed on his right leg, but Faircloth had no further details on the extent of the injury.


The game changed when …

Marshall faced just third-and-1 on its opening drive. The Indians contained the Buffs on two short runs, but the first pass the Buffs tried — Hornsby’s swing to Achane — went 66 yards for the first score. Marshall never trailed.


The game ball goes to …

Davis, who ran 13 times for 169 yards.


Next up …

Fort Bend Marshall will take on either Marshall of northeast Texas or Huntsville for the regional championship. Those two teams will play Saturday night at Frisco’s Ford Center.

I.C. Murrell: 721-2435. Twitter: @ICMurrellPANews


Buffalos 53, Indians 14

Fort Bend Marshall   18       21       14       0          —        53

Port Neches-Groves  0          7          0          7          —        14

First quarter

Marshall — Devon Achane 66 pass from Malik Hornsby (run failed), 11:22

Marshall — Jerry Davis 37 run (run failed), 8:05

Marshall — Dalevon Campbell 25 pass from Hornsby (pass failed), 3:36

Second quarter

Marshall — Davis 4 run (run failed), 7:02

PNG — Roschon Johnson 20 run (Mario Oceguera kick), 5:38

Marshall — Hornsby 3 run (Achane run), 4:21

Marshall — Achane 52 punt return (Angel Martinez kick), 2:30

Third quarter

Marshall — Davis 10 run (Martinez kick), 5:57

Marshall — Hornsby 1 run (Martinez kick), 4:12

Fourth quarter

PNG — Jaylan Williams 67 run (Oceguera kick), 8:37


                                    FBM                PNG

First downs                18                   18

Rushes-yards             306                 309

Passing yards             220                 89

Total yards                 526                 398

Comp-Att-Int             7-14-1             11-24-0

Fumbles-lost              0-0                  3-0

Penalties-yards         3-20                4-34


Individual statistics

RUSHING — Marshall: Davis 13-169, Hornsby 9-73, Achane 6-34, Jamille Adams 6-22, Andrew Reynolds 4-12, Korey King 2-2, Team 1-(-6). PNG: Johnson 19-133, Williams 7-106, DaeDae Conner 10-44, Jose Ceja 2-21, Rhett Green 1-5.

PASSING — Marshall: Hornsby 7-13-1, 210. PNG: Johnson 10-23-0, 81; Grant Rogers 1-1-0, 8.

RECEIVING — Marshall: King 4-87, Campbell 2-67, Achane 1-66. PNG: Cooper Hammond 4-35, Ceja 2-20, Kaleb Wuenschel 2-14, Desmond Nguyen 1-8, Cade Billeaud 1-6, Kade Guilbeau 1-6.




About I.C. Murrell

I.C. Murrell was promoted to editor of The News, effective Oct. 14, 2019. He previously served as sports editor since August 2015 and has won or shared eight first-place awards from state newspaper associations and corporations. He was born in Memphis, Tennessee, grew up mostly in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, and graduated from the University of Arkansas at Monticello.

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