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2009 Carthage - 1st Undefeated Season


BevBrownJr

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Ten interesting facts:

1.  Four of Class 3A CHS's 5 non-district wins came over teams from District 14-4A.

2. CHS's 29-17 win over eventual district champ Kilgore in the season opener was the only loss Kilgore coach Mike Vallery suffered to Carthage in his long stint at Kilgore.

3. CHS's final non-district game, a 21-17 win over playoff-bound Jacksonville in the Tomato Bowl, was the third comeback win in the first 5 games.  Kilgore and Henderson had also led the Bulldogs before falling.

4.  In what ended up being the district championship game, CHS held Jasper to only 3 first downs (none rushing) in winning 27-3.  Jasper, which came into the game 6-1, was coached by Scott Surratt's predecessor at CHS, Mike Bickham.

5.  CHS had to come-from-behind to beat Mexia 35-26 in the second round of the playoffs.  In the first quarter, Mexia took a 12-0 lead, running 23 plays to the Bulldogs' 3.

6.  CHS led Caldwell in the third-round playoff game 42-0 at the half, put its reserves in to start the second half, and had to reinsert the starters in the 4th quarter after the Hornets pulled within 15 points of the lead.  The final score was 56-41, Carthage.

7.  In the quarterfinals, Lorena played CHS 4 TDs closer than they had in the prior year's second-round game.  The Bulldogs needed all of senior RB O'Bryan "Wheatie" Washington's 201 rushing yards to win this game, which was tied at halftime.

8. La Grange fell to CHS in the semifinals 27-14. Although the Leopards had come into the game with nearly 3,900 yards passing for the year and had a wide receiver who was later named First Team All-State, all of their points came late in the fourth quarter after the CHS reserves had entered the game.

9.  The 13-12 win over Graham in the state championship game at SMU came down to an unsuccessful two-point attempt by the Steers after their second TD of the final quarter.  The stop was made by the Class 3A Defensive Player of the Year, two-time First Team All-Stater Deshun Williams, who had missed part of the game with a leg injury suffered in the first half.

10.  Coach Scott Surratt was named Class 3A Coach of the Year by the Texas Sportswriters Association. That group named as First Team All-Staters RB Washington (over 1,800 yards rushing), DL Williams (played collegiately at Texas State), senior OL Kendrick Henderson (like Williams, a 2-time First Team All-Stater), and OL Cutter Clinton (played collegiately at SFA).  Another 4 Bulldogs were named Second Team All-State: senior TE Trevor Murphy, senior DE Tre'Kevian McKee. junior WR Jalen Claiborne (first receiver in CHS history to have more than 1,000 yards in pass receptions in a season), and junior LB Kendall Thompson (144 tackles, 21 TFLs, 3 interceptions).  

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Regarding Graham’s unsuccessful 2-point attempt with 1:22 remaining in the state championship game:

Graham’s first extra-point attempt failed when the kick was short. It was kicked straight down the middle, but it didn’t have the distance (i.e., went less than 20 yards in the air.)

Thus, when the Steers scored their second touchdown of the game with less than 2 minutes remaining to pull within 13-12, everyone expected a 2-point attempt. After all, Graham’s kicking game wasn’t exactly stellar. After taking a timeout,   the Steers returned to the field and lined up as if they were going to kick. This may have fooled a few of the fans present, but it couldn’t have been many. All those on the CHS side were on their feet yelling to watch for a fake. (Perhaps we thought Coach Surratt and staff hadn’t thought of that possibility.)

The expected fake came. My recollection is that the snap went to either the kicker or the holder, who tried to run straight at CHS All-State DT Deshun Williams for the necessary yardage. The attempt failed.

It seemed strange that Graham thought their best play to get 3 yards and win a state championship was a fake in a situation in which there was very little chance that the opponent would be fooled. Even stranger is the fact that Graham’s best offensive player, Second Team All-State QB Case McCoy (who later followed his older brother, Colt, to UT), wasn’t even on the field for this championship-deciding play. After leading the offense the entire game, he was relegated to standing on the sidelines beside his head coach, who is also his father, watching the whole thing like all of us fans.

 

 

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