NACOGDOCHES — Crockett’s statement Saturday night was loud and clear on the Stephen F. Austin State University campus. The Bulldogs defeated Harmony 55-21 at Homer Bryce Stadium in a Class 2A, Division II regional playoff.
The win follows a week in which the Universal Interscholastic League investigated Crockett for using ineligible players in their victory against Newton last Friday. The UIL cleared the Bulldogs of all allegations.
Crockett displayed a balanced run and pass game, while slowing the Eagles’ run game on defense. The Bulldogs ran for 176 yards on 42 carries and converted 18 first downs. Andjuwan Smith led the way for Crockett with 221 yards passing and 93 yards rushing.
The Bulldogs move on to play Tatum in the state quarterfinals on Friday. The game is scheduled for 7 p.m. at Bruce Field in Athens. Tatum defeated Winnie East Chambers 45-7 Friday night.
The Bulldogs wasted little time in putting up points on the scoreboard. Smith found Michael McKnight for 35 yards on a third-and-11 to move Crockett to the nine. Smith took the football into the end zone on the next play the 7-0 lead.
Crockett recovered a fumble on Harmony’s first possession, but gave the Eagles possession at the two when a long snap sailed over Smith’s head on fourth down.
Matt Hosea scored on the next play to get Harmony on the board. The Eagles converted the two-point conversion to take an 8-7 lead.
Harmony then forced Crockett to punt, but fumbled on their next offensive play. D’Vaughan Le picked up the loose ball and scored from 20 yards out to regain the lead for the Bulldogs.
Crockett took control of the game in the second quarter, scoring four touchdowns and holding a 41-8 lead at halftime.
Smith scored the first two touchdowns of the quarter on runs of six and three yards. The Bulldogs’ third score of the second period came on an interception return. Devin Chambers caught a batted ball and ran 31 yards for the score.
Crockett forced a three-and-out following the defensive touchdown and promptly scored on their next offensive play. Smith hit Dominique Wheeler on a wide receiver screen for a 42-yard score.
The Bulldogs didn’t let up in the third quarter, scoring on their first possession. Smith and Wheeler hooked up again for the touchdown on a 16-yard play.
Harmony showed life after the Bulldogs’ touchdown. A halfback pass moved the Eagles inside the Bulldogs’ five. Hosea punched it in from four yards out for the score with 1:25 to play in the third quarter.
Crockett responded with their final touchdown of the contest. Denell Parker capped off a nine-play drive with a five-yard score.
Harmony’s final score came on their next possession as well. Wesley Schoon found Lucas Askew on a fade pass for a 14-yard touchdown.
The Eagles, led by Levi Thompson, rushed for 139 yards in the contest. Thompson recorded 64 yards on 13 carries. Hosea added 19 rushes for 57 yards for the Eagles.