LUFKIN — If it’s a sprint to the finish line, consider the Chapel Hill Bulldogs odds-on favorites.
The top-ranked Bulldogs ran over, around and through Jasper in a dominating 70-28 win Friday night in their Class 3A Division I bi-district playoff at Abe Martin Stadium.
Chapel Hill (11-0) rolled up 502 yards on the ground, running at will on the Jasper (6-5) defense. Four different Chapel Hill ball carriers scored at least two touchdowns.
“When we go into a football game we want to be as physical as possible,” Chapel Hill coach Thomas Sitton said. “Our O-line did an unbelievable job tonight. I thought they were getting downfield and getting their blocks.”
Senior Andrew Tucker, injured for much of the year, led the way by going for a season-high 205 yards and two scores on only 15 attempts.
“It’s always nice to have him back with us,” Sitton said of Tucker. “He’s a big kid, he runs hard, he runs fast and he’s very hard to tackle.”
Rex Rollins added 113 yards and two touchdowns, while Jay Reagan (71 yards) and Tre Allen (53) each crossed the goal line twice.
Chapel Hill will face undefeated and 10th-ranked Waco La Vega (11-0) next week in the regional round. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. Friday at Bowers Stadium on the campus of Sam Houston State University in Huntsville.
Jasper jumped in front 7-0 after its opening drive of the game, but Chapel Hill had its way from then on, scoring on its next 11 possessions of the game.
Senior quarterback Avery Saenz, in his second game back from injury, wasn’t asked to do much. He completed 5 of 9 attempts for 68 yards, including an 8-yard touchdown toss to Reagan in the first quarter. Saenz did not attempt a pass in the second half.
Jasper standout senior running back Karrion Morrisey, coming off a 300-yard rushing performance in the previous week, put a cap on his high school career by going for a game-high 229 yards and two touchdowns.
“(Morrisey) was definitely one of the best backs we’ve tried to defend this year,” Sitton said. “We didn’t defend him very well. It took more than one guy to get him on the ground.”
Receiver Demarcus Collins had four catches for 132 yards and two TDs.
“We didn’t play as well defensively as we should have tonight,” Sitton said.
Jasper didn’t waste any time taking the game’s first lead when, on the fourth play from scrimmage, Steven Walker executed the play-action fake to perfection and hit a wide-open Collins down the middle of the field for a 61-yard touchdown.
Chapel Hill sputtered on its opening drive, but Jasper could not capitalize as it was forced into a three-and-out.
Chapel Hill took its first lead of the game when Saenz’s 8-yard touchdown pass to Reagan capped a seven-play, 55-yard drive. Tyler Brown’s PAT gave Chapel Hill a 14-7 lead with 2:21 remaining in the first quarter.
Jasper marched it inside Chapel Hill territory on the ensuing drive, but Anthony Kincade leapt high for an interception inside the 10 to give the ball back to Chapel Hill.
On fourth-and-2, Tucker raced 40 yards to the end zone to give Chapel Hill a 21-7 lead early in the second quarter.
Jasper answered, marching 57 yards in nine plays and scoring on Morrisey’s 1-yard touchdown plunge. The extra point cut Chapel Hill’s advantage to 21-14 with 7:28 to go until halftime.
It didn’t take long for Chapel Hill to regain a two-score lead. On the first play of the drive, Tucker broke free and found the end zone from 46 yards out to put Chapel Hill on top 28-14.
Joseph Clark polished off Chapel Hill’s next drive by running over a defender and powering his way 20 yards for a touchdown.
Chapel Hill added to its lead right before the half when Reagan crossed the goal line from four yards away for his third touchdown of the half, making it 42-14 at halftime.
No. 1 Chapel Hill 70, Jasper 28
Class 3A Division I Bi-District
At Abe Martin Stadium, Lufkin
Jasper 7 7 7 7 —28
Chapel Hill 14 28 21 7 — 70
JAS—Demarcus Collins 61 pass from Steven Walker (Marco Lopez kick), 10:00.
CH—Jay Reagan 8 pass from Avery Saenz (Tyler Brown kick), 5:05.
CH—Andrew Tucker 40 run (Brown kick), 2:21.
CH—Reagan 36 run (Brown kick), 11:36.
JAS—Karrion Morrisey 1 run (Lopez kick), 7:28.
CH—Tucker 46 run (Brown kick), 7:16.
CH—Joseph Clark 20 run (Brown kick), 3:06.
CH—Reagan 4 run (Brown kick), :08.
CH—Rex Rollins 28 run (Brown kick), 8:23.
JAS—Collins 18 pass from Walker (Lopez kick), 7:16.
CH—Rollins 12 run (Brown kick), 5:54.
CH—Tre Allen 12 run (Brown kick), 1:33.
JAS—Morrisey 6 run (Lopez kick), 7:45.
CH—Allen 7 run (Brown kick), 3:54.
First Downs 21 30
Rushes-Yards 47-224 43-502
Passing Yards 148 68
Comp.-Att.-Int. 9-18-2 5-9-0
Punts-Avg. 3-33.7 1-32.0
Fumbles-Lost 1-1 1-0
RUSHING—Jasper, Karrion Morrisey 36-229, Demarcus Collins 1-10, Donavan Middleton 2-5, Dranzell Haynes 2-4, Steven Walker 6-(-24). Chapel Hill, Andrew Tucker 15-205, Rex Rollins 7-113, Jay Reagan 6-71, Tre Allen 5-53, Joseph Clark 1-20, JaMarcus McCowin 4-19, Anthony Kincade 1-18, Londreyus Johnson 2-16, Gabriel Robinson 1-1, Avery Saenz 2-(-14).
PASSING—Jasper, Walker 9-18-2—148. Chapel Hill, Saenz 5-9-0—68.
RECEIVING—Jasper, Collins 4-132, Morrisey 2-7, Haynes 1-6, Nick Stott 1-2, Dion Beard 1-1. Chapel Hill, Nelson Onwuzu 1-21, Kincade 1-15, Avery Henderson 1-12, Tucker 1-12, Reagan 1-8.