BULLARD — Bullard outscored Canton 35-15 in the second half to take a 57-36 win on Friday night.
The win clinched a playoff spot for the Panthers.
It was the second straight year that Bullard had defeated Canton in the final game of the regular season to advance to the postseason.
Canton will now have to take on No. 2 Waco Connally. This verdict also knocked Brownsboro out of the playoffs.
In the first quarter, the Panthers stuffed the Eagles for 17 yards of losses on the first possession. Tristen Shewmake dove in from the 1-yard line for the touchdown. Ivan Ruiz kicked the extra point, and Bullard led 7-0.
This fired up the Eagles and they marched right down the field. Chris Hobbs finished off the drive passing 22 yards to Cooper Smith for the touchdown. The point after was missed and the Panthers still led 7-6.
Gunner Boswell for the Eagles and Caden Key for the Panthers played really well defensively in the first half. Starting quarterback Hobbs went out in the first quarter with an undisclosed injury.
Starting the second quarter on a bizarre play where the quarterback appeared sacked, then the pass looked to be intercepted, turned into a 660yard touchdown pass. Jason Brisbois passed to Chris Cade for the score. Brisbois passed to Smith for the two points and Canton led 14-7.
After a three-and-out, the Eagles scampered right down the field scoring from 7 yards out. Cade rushed in for the touchdown. Nathan Goodson kicked the extra point and Canton led 21-7.
Not to be denied, the Panthers came back and on fourth down Shewmake hit Nic Hooley for 22 years and another pass touchdown. Ruiz converted the kick and Canton led 21-14.
With just minutes to go until halftime, Bullard passed their way inside the Eagles five yard line. Shewmake surged in from four yards out for one more touchdown. Shewmake hit Latrez Young for two points and Bullard took a 22-21 halftime lead.
The second half began with each team exchanging scores. Bullard scored a one yard touchdown from Bryson Luscombe. Ruiz converted to give the Panthers a 29-21 lead. Canton scored on a 22 yard touchdown run by Jatavian McGee. Brisbois ran in the two point conversion and fans, we are tied up 29-29.
Before the quarter was over, Bullard’s Shewmake high stepped for 13 yards and 29 yards for two more Panther touchdowns. Ruiz kicked both extra points and Bullard led 43-29 going into the fourth quarter.
The Panthers controlled the fourth quarter, but Canton would not give up. Brisbois hit Smith for a 20 yard touchdown pass. Goodson converted and the Panthers lead was cut to 50-36.
Bullard tacked on one more score. Luscombe bulled in for a one yard touchdown. Caleb Carmichael kicked the final point. The final score was 57-36.
Shewmake had an outstanding game running and passing for Bullard. Cade was equally good for the Eagles.
Bullard will open the playoffs against Mexia at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Longhorn Stadium in Cedar Hill. Canton will take on Waco Connally at 7 p.m. Thursday at Tiger Stadium in Corsicana.