By Bob Kowalski
Timberview maintained its unbeaten season by defeating Frisco Heritage, 33-14, in a first-round playoff game Friday night at Vernon Newsom Stadium.
The Wolves (11-0), No. 2 in Texas Football’s state rankings, shook off a balky first quarter and their defense clamped down on Heritage (6-5) to advance to the second round in its fifth consecutive postseason appearance.
Running back Javeon Madison, carrying the load as backfield mate Jarvis Reed sat out with an injury, scored twice on 1-yard runs as Timberview leaned on the running game during a contest played in strong southerly winds.
Madison’s first touchdown gave the Wolves their first lead at 14-7 with 5 minutes left in the first half. That 13-play drive was started when Jordan Sanford intercepted a Heritage pass at the Wolves’ 20-yard line, returning it 20 yards to set up Timberview near midfield.
The Wolves expanded the lead to 20-7 on Madison’s second 1-yard TD dive late in the third quarter. With the wind at their back and the quarter winding down, Heritage went to the air, with quarterback Devin Calvin hitting Tatum Bell for a 55-yard pass down to the Timberview 4-yard line. Calvin ran it in from there to cut the lead to 20-14.
Timberview ground out the rest of the game, controlling the ball, field position and clock. With 4 minutes gone in the fourth quarter, freshman running back Cedric Portley capped a Wolves’ drive with runs of 11 and 16 yards, the second being a touchdown for a 27-14 lead.
Cameron Bates scored on a 4-yard run with under 2 minutes to play to finish the scoring and send Timberview into the second round. The Wolves will meet Barbers Hill on Friday at John Gupton Stadium in Cedar Park.
Timberview had trouble getting its offense untracked early in the game, in part because of field position. Heritage struck first, but with its defense. D’Andre Stephens intercepted a Timberview pass at the Heritage 45-yard line and took it to the end zone for a 7-0 Heritage lead with just under four minutes left in the first quarter.
The Wolves’ offense came alive after that, gaining 14 yards on a first-down pass from Zuric Humes to Savion McKinnon and a nine-yard run by Humes, who shed several tacklers at the line. Madison busted up the middle for 12 on one carry, and then pushed off tackles for another seven yards on the next run to give Timberview a first down at Heritage’s 29-yard line.
From there, Humes passed to a wide-open DJ Hill on a post route for a 29-yard touchdown, tying the game at 7-7 with 2 ½ minutes left in the opening quarter. Emma Fowler became the first Timberview High female to score a point in a Mansfield ISD playoff game when she kicked that extra point.
Madison’s touchdown gave Timberview a 14-7 lead at halftime.
Elsewhere in the Mansfield ISD, Mansfield (7-4) fell to Harker Heights, 26-2, and Summit (5-6) lost to defending state champion South Oak Cliff, 12-7.
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