Special teams and turnovers hurt John Tyler as the Lions dropped a 37-14 decision to Mesquite Poteet on Friday in a District 7-5A Division I football game at Christus Trinity Mother Frances Rose Stadium.
The Lions drop to 3-6 on the season and 3-2 in league play, while Poteet improves to 5-4 and 4-1.
Poteet will play at McKinney North with a chance to capture the district championship. JT, which has clinched a playoff berth, will conclude the regular season at Sherman.
Oklahoma commit and standout running back Seth McGowan did not play his second straight game, but junior Xzaveon Jeans more than made up for his absence with 209 yards and a 42-yard TD dash on 29 carries.
The game was still up in the air as Poteet led 24-14, but JT had the ball at the Pirates’ 13-yard line in the fourth quarter.
However, Jeremiah Anukem stepped in front of the JT receiver at the 11 and picked off the pass, running 89 yards for deciding touchdown. It was his second pickoff of the game. Also Jalen Hodo had an interception for Poteet.
After Matthew Duarte’s PAT, the Bucs led 31-14.
After Hodo’s interception, Jeans scored on a 42-yard run with 22 seconds remaining.
Kitan Crawford scored both of JT’s TDs, a 15-yard run in first half and a 26-yard run in the third. Victor Leon booted both extra points. Crawford rushed for 84 yards on 11 attempts.
JT lost two fumbles, including one on a punt and threw three interceptions.
Sophomore Eli Sanchez started for the Lions and hit on 4 of 6 pass attempts for 19 yards. Isaiah Johnson came into the game in the second quarter and was the signal caller for the remainder of the game, hitting 8 of 20 for 99 yards and three interceptions.
Mesquite Poteet took a 10-7 in the first half as JT committed three turnovers, two lost fumbles and an interception.
The Pirates struck first as quarterback Jaylond Police connected with Jailyn Graham, who got behind the secondary, for a 44-yard TD in the first quarter. It was the first of Graham’s two TD receptions. The second was for 19 yards in the third quarter.
JT tied the game at 7-7 when the Lions marched 99 yards on 12 plays, overcoming a first-and-20 at one point. The drive was topped off by a 15-yard run by Crawford on a third-and-6. Leon’s PAT tied the game at 7-7 with 1:00 left in the second quarter.
However, the Pirates marched right back thanks to runs of 35 and 29 by Jeans that eventually got the ball to the JT 8. However, three straight incompetitions, including nice plays by Johnson, Crawford and Travion Ates forced a field goal attempt, which Duarte nailed from 26 yards for a 10-7 Pirates leads at halftime.
While JT did fumble another punt return, the Lions punter Miguel Munoz booted a 68-yard kick in the first half. However in the second half, Munoz had a punt blocked.
Crawford and Johnson recovered fumbles for the Lions.
Poteet’s Johnathan Terrelonge and King Moore recovered fumbles.
John Tyler honored seniors from the football team, band, drill team, ROTC, cheerleaders, Lion Guard and student council during pregame. ... Senior son the football team are Isaiah Johnson, D’Jonte Henderson, Frank Turner, Shiloh Canady, Austin Campbell, Kameron Mayfield, Damion Taylor, Jermone Bowser Jr., Isaiah Lewis, Quymar Jones, Alex Allen, Kitan Crawford, Xavier Williams, Daveon Cmmings, Tyrone Williams, Miguel Munoz, Victor Leon, Jalen Williams, Kimbrick McCaney, Angel Sarmiento and Dovonne Farmer.
Mesquite Poteet 37, John Tyler 14
Poteet 7 3 7 20 — 37
John Tyler 0 7 7 0 — 14
MP — Jailyn Graham 44 pass from Jaylond Police (Matthew Duarte kick), 4:44
JT — Kitan Crawford 15 run (Victor Leon kick), 1:00
MP — FG Duarte 26, :00
MP — Graham 19 pass from Police (Duarte kick), 6:53
JT — Crawford 26 run (Leon kick), 5:26
MP — Police 1 run (Duarte kick), 4:59
MP — Jeremiah Aunukem 89 interception return (Duarte kick), 3:35
MP — Xzaveon Jeans 42 run (kick failed), :22
First Downs 14 17
Rushes-Yards 39-203 26-143
Passing Yards 139 118
C-A-I 7-19-0 12-26-3
Punts-Ave 6-26.3 5-41.0
Fumbles-Lost 3-2 5-2
Penalties-Yards 10-82 4-30
Rushing — Mesquite Poteet, Xzaveon Jeans 28-209, Ryan Marshall 1-0, Jailyn Graham 3-(-1), Jaylond Police 7-(-5). John Tyler, Kitan Crawford 11-84, Isaiah Johnson 6-18, Jakyron Lacy 2-18, Kameron Medlock 3-14, Ken'Yontae Pinkard 3-9, Xavier Williams 1-0.
Passing — Mesquite Poteet, Jaylond Police 7-19-0-139. John Tyler, Isaiah Johnson 8-20-3-99, Eli Sanchez 4-6-0-19.
Receiving — Mesquite Poteet, Jailyn Graham 2-63, Tristan Golightly 2-41 Deovn Stanley 1-22, Xzaveon Jeans 1-9, TJ McCollum 1-4. John Tyler, Frank Turner 2-42, Robert Draper 2-38, Kitan Crawford 2-14, Xavier Tatum 2-12, Austin Campbell 2-7, Kameron Medlock 1-10, Ken'Yontae Pinkard 1-(1-5).