FOOTBALL: Horns' Electricity, Luck Fail in Playoff Loss to North Shore

FOOTBALL: Horns' Electricity, Luck Fail in Playoff Loss to North Shore
Posted on 11/15/2014
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HIGH-WATER MARK FOR DOBIE'S OFFENSE: Rashaad Randall blasts into the end zone from eight yards out to lift the Longhorns to a 14-7 lead late in the first quarter as quarterback Joe Gonzalez flashes "No. 1." Dobie added only a field goal the rest of the game.

6075Good fortune turned grievously foul on Friday night for the Dobie Longhorns, who once again dropped a first-round playoff game to powerful North Shore.

Longhorn elation turned to dejection in a span of roughly 10 seconds as what looked to be a potential North Shore turnover turned into a game-tying touchdown for the Mustangs, who promptly rolled to a 38-17 victory in the opening round of the Class 6A Division 1 playoffs at Veterans Memorial Stadium.

The loss snapped Dobie’s six-game winning streak, assembled after four straight losses to start the season. And it extended North Shore’s winning streak over the Longhorns to four games – each one a first-round playoff conquest each of the past four seasons.

The game’s signature play came at the 7:19 mark of the third quarter with Dobie still hanging on to a 17-10 halftime lead. North Shore quarterback Maciah Long lined up in shotgun formation from the Dobie 43 – then watched the center’s snap sail five feet over his head and across midfield.

Long beat the Dobie defense to the ball. But instead of falling on it, Long scooped it up and fled. Suddenly, he spotted receiver Autria Lynch wide open on the left sideline, near the original line of scrimmage.  Long fired the ball to Lynch, who turned around and found no one standing between him and the goal-line.

Lynch scampered to the end zone, enabling the Mustangs to tie the game at 17-all.

Dobie never recovered.

On their next series, the Longhorns lost quarterback Joe Gonzalez to an ankle injury. The Mustangs, on their next series, cashed in on a more conventional, 46-yard TD strike from Long to Darius Mouton.

The gap between TDs --  between Dobie delight and Dobie doom – was just 125 seconds.

Long threw his fourth TD pass of the game – a 9-yarder to Tyler Bourdeaux – on the first play of the fourth quarter. A blocked Dobie punt late in the fourth quarter set up North Shore’s final TD, an 8-yard run by Myron James.

All told, North Shore – after falling behind 17-7 in the first half – scored the final 31 points of the game.

The Mustangs’ comeback was even more sensational considering the way the Longhorns dominated the first half. Dobie’s only seriously sour note in the first two quarters was a 59-yard TD bomb from Long to Mouton that followed the Longhorns’ opening salvo.

Rashaad Randall lifted Dobie to a 7-0 lead on a 3-yard TD run midway through the first quarter. Randall struck again after Long’s long lob to Mouton, this time on an 8-yard run in the final minute of the quarter.

A 27-yard field goal by Alexis Saldivar gave Dobie it’s high-water, 17-7 lead with 5:13 to play in the first half. North Shore answered that with a 31-yard field goal by Saul Ruiz in the final minutes of the half.

Dobie’s offense never again gained traction after Saldivar’s field goal, either with Gonzalez at the helm or with his replacement, Tyler Giron. The Longhorns completed nine passes in the game but earned only 29 yards through the air.

Randall, one of the area’s most productive runners, gained 79 yards on 21 carries in his final game.

Long provided the bulk of his team’s offense with a 10-of-18 passing effort good for 189 yards. Mouton caught five passes for 111 yards.

North Shore advances to the second round with a 7-4 record.

Dobie quarterback Joe Gonzalez tries to elude North Shore's Anthony Owens during first-quarter action.

Dobie's Juwaun Bracey hauls down North Shore's Darius Mouton after a short completion.

Randall posts the first points of the game on a 3-yard TD run with 6:23 left in the first quarter.

Longhorn fans cheer an interception by Juwaun Bracey in the first half.

Dobie's Derrick Mathews picks up a first down on a reverse play in the second quarter.

Dobie's Alexis Saldivar launches a 27-yard field goal in the second quarter for what proved to be the Longhorns' final points of the game.

Randall scans the field and slips away for a first down during first-half action.

Dobie defensive back Darius Hypolite breaks up a pass intended for Darius Mouton near the Longhorns' goal-line late in the first half. The play forced the Mustangs to settle for a field goal.

Dobie's Ryan Williams takes down North Shore's John Blanson (33) after a short pass completion.

North Shore's Darius Mouton finds running room on a 46-yard TD reception in the third quarter. The score broke a 17-17 tie.

Tyler Giron, Dobie's backup quarterback, ducks behind the protection of Rashaad Randall in the fourth quarter. Giron evaded the North Shore rush and got off an incomplete pass.