By Alonzo Garza
Flashes of brilliance on the gridiron turned out to be just that – “flashes” – for the Lions last Friday night. Lockhart started out strong against Dripping Springs. They moved the ball forward with incredible speed, executed plays with precision and led the Tigers 20-0 after the first quarter, but could not seal the deal. The Lions fell 41-26 after a valiant effort.
“It was kind of a tale of two games,” Lion Head Football Coach Paul Kilby said after the heartbreaking loss. “We played outstanding for the first nine minutes I think it was, but it certainly was not enough. One quarter is not enough. I was concerned at 20-nothing that we were too sky high on our sideline and we lost focus. I wish I had called a timeout at that point and try to refocus our kids. It’s a subtle process. Like I told them, learning how to win again is a process.”
The game began with an exciting first quarter in which the Lions showcased the very best of their potential. Levi Mair scored the first touchdown at 6:20. A two-point conversion attempt failed for a score of 6-0.
An unexpected onside kick by the Lions set the ball at the Tiger 43-yard line. Mair scored the second Lion touchdown by 4:22 and a successful two-point conversion set the score at 14-0.
Vonte Hedspeth recovered a second onside kick for a Lion first-and-10 at the Tiger 46. Mair scored again with 3:51 remaining in the quarter. A two-point conversion attempt failed when a pass to (19) fell incomplete for a final first quarter score of 20-0.
Dripping Springs scored at the top of second quarter. The extra point kick was good for a score of 20-7 with 11:12 remaining. The Tigers scored again with a kick off return touchdown at 8:07 and yet another touchdown by 4:15. Both extra point kicks were good closing out the first half scoring at 20-21 and the Tigers in the lead by one point.
The Lions attempted their third and final onside kick at the top of the third quarter. The Tigers recovered the ball for a first-and-10 at the 46. At 9:15 the Lions took over possession of the ball at their own seven-yard line after a long Tiger kick off. Logan Zimmerhanzel intercepted a ball during the third and after both teams exhausted their opportunities to score the quarter ended at 21-20.
The Lions roared into the fourth quarter with great courage and determination. They took the lead with a final touchdown by Marcos Rodriguez. The two-point conversion attempt failed for a score of 26-21 with 11:56 remaining in the game.
The Tigers scored again at 11:02. The two-point conversion failed when determined Lions blocked a pass for a score of 27-26.
The Dripping Springs fans rallied behind the Tigers for the remainder of the game. The Tigers scored another touchdown with a quarter back keeper run. The extra point kick was good for a score of 34-26 at 7:22.
A holding penalty against the Tigers set the final touchdown scoring play on the 47-yard line with a 2-and-20 at 4:31 remaining. A long near perfect pass to the right side of the field was caught and taken in for a touchdown, ending the scoring at 41-26.
“Our kids are winners, “Kilby said, “We just need to learn to win games. They need to start learning how to win ball games especially when you are deep down in a hole or you jump up to a 20-nothing lead, you have to learn how to maintain an even keel and win ball games.”
Lockhart (2-2) travels to San Antonio and faces Alamo Heights (2-2) on Friday Sept. 23. The game begins at 7:30 p.m.
“Alamo Heights is an excellent football team with a great tradition,” Kilby said “We are going to keep continuing to learn from the mistakes me made in this game and put our best effort forth.”
See you at the game.