RALLS – Ralls had Lubbock Christian High all figured out Friday night at Doc Mize Field.
At halftime, the Eagles trailed 8-6 and had rushed for negative yards, stifled by Ralls’ stout linebacking corps.
The Jackrabbits controlled the pace, owned the clock and came up with big plays when they needed.
Then the wheels came off.
“We just ran out of gas,” Ralls coach Tim James said. “You could see it. We had turnovers that killed us in the third quarter.”
LCHS wide receiver Brock Hooten took full advantage of a tired Ralls side and caught two touchdowns in the third quarter. He ran for another in the fourth and LCHS went on to beat the Jackrabbits 41-20.
Hooten, who entered the game with two touchdowns on the season, had scoring catches of 70, 59 and eight yards in addition to a 22-yard touchdown run.
Eagles quarterback Michael Sanders had little trouble finding his prime target.
“They’ve got a connection that you look for in a receiver and a quarterback,” LCHS coach Aaron Stone said. “And some of those plays were improvised. They came up with them.”
Hooten finished the game with 168 receiving yards and 40 more on the ground. Sanders, who was the Avalanche-Journal’s Week 0 All-City Player of the Week, rushed for 61 yards and a touchdown and racked up 340 passing yards and four touchdowns. He also had an interception on defense.
The Eagles (2-2) scored 29 points in the third quarter and held Ralls (2-2) to 12 in the second half.
Hooten gave credit to the offensive line, which gave Sanders time to find receivers.
“They had an off first half,” Hooten said of the front line. “Second half they just dominated the line. I couldn’t be more proud of them.”
LCHS forced four turnovers, including two interceptions by senior Jordan Hoffman.
Ralls quarterback C.J. Gonzales was picked off three times and fumbled late in the fourth quarter in the red zone. He finished with 67 yards passing, 115 yards rushing and a touchdown through the air. Running back Chris Mata rushed for 100 yards.
Ralls’ triple-option was effective in the first half, allowing the Jackrabbits to rush for 79 yards on 28 carries. The constant running attack set up a touchdown midway through the first quarter, when Gonzales ran to his right and handed off to Kaleb Reese. The freshman running back swung around to the left and threw to a wide open Tyler Logan, who ran into the end zone for a 43-yard score, the first of his two touchdown catches.
Hoffman’s first interception of the second quarter led to Lubbock Christian’s first touchdown. On the second play from scrimmage, Sanders found Hooten down the right sideline for a 70-yard touchdown pass.
“Their linebacking crew is pretty salty,” Stone said. “It’s hard to run on them. We’re a pass-oriented offense, but we pride ourselves on running. I was a little disappointed we couldn’t run down the field a little more.”
The Eagles finished with only 85 yards on the ground against Ralls’ 235.
LCHS 41, RALLS 20
LCHS 0 6 29 6 -- 41
Ralls 8 0 6 6 -- 20
RALLS – Tyler Logan 43 pass from Kaleb Reese (C.J. Gonzales run); 7:25
LCHS – Brock Hooten 70 pass from Michael Sanders (pass fails); 2:49
RALLS – Gonzales 1 run (pass fails); 9:33
LCHS – Sanders 61 run (Michael Smith pass from Sanders); 8:22
LCHS – Hooten 8 pass from Sanders (Smith kick); 7:41
LCHS – Hooten 59 pass from Sanders (Smith kick); 5:18
LCHS – Smith 5 pass from Sanders (Smith kick); 3:01
LCHS – Hooten 22 run (kick blocked); 6:29
RALLS – Logan 21 pass from Gonzales (pass fails); 0:57
First Downs 12 12
Rushes-yards 25-85 56-235
Comp-Att.-Int. 13-21-1 3-14-3
Passing yards 340 110
Penalties-yards 10-78 13-85
Punts-avg 5-40.6 5-32.8
Fumbles-lost 5-1 1-1