Football Playoff Roundup: Tompkins and Katy Advance

Story updated to reflect coverage of the Tompkins-Cy Falls game.

By George Slaughter

Tompkins and Katy will advance to the regional round of the high school football playoffs after posting wins on Saturday and Friday, respectively.

Meanwhile, Taylor, the Katy Independent School District’s other team in the playoffs, lost a tough game against Cypress Creek Friday.

Tompkins 31, Cy Falls 21

Tompkins scored 14 unanswered points in the second half to win its 31-21 area playoff game against Cy Falls Saturday afternoon at Ken Pridgeon Stadium.

The Falcons improve to 10-2 and will play Beaumont West Brook at 6 p.m. Saturday at NRG Stadium. West Brook defeated Strake Jesuit Friday night. Cy Falls finishes its season at 9-3.

Tompkins began the game strong, scoring on its first drive. Junior running back RJ Smith scored a 15 yard touchdown run. Kicker Jacinto Esteban added the extra point.

On the ensuing possession, the Falcons intercepted a Cy Falls pass and found themselves in business at the Cy Falls 29. The drive stalled, however, but Esteban kicked a 41-yard field goal to put Tompkins ahead 10-0 with 5:39 left in the first quarter.

At this point the Eagles took charge. Cy Falls senior quarterback T.J. Goodwin threw a 58-yard touchdown pass to senior wide receiver Semaj Trahan with 3:22 left in the second quarter.

Goodwin threw his second touchdown pass, this time a 12-yarder to senior wide receiver Josh Morris, to give Cy Falls its only lead with 10:40 in the second quarter.

Tompkins fumbled on its next possession, and the Eagles recovered. Cy Falls added to its lead on a flea-flicker pass that went for 38 yards, from Goodwin to Trahan with 8:57 left in the second quarter.

Cy Falls was up 21-10 at this point, but the Falcons fought back and recaptured the momentum, scoring on an eight-yard run by Smith at the 7:21 mark.

The game became a defensive struggle, but with seven seconds remaining in the third quarter Tompkins took the lead on a 30-yard run by senior quarterback Trace Jordan.

The defensive struggle continued in the fourth quarter, but Smith scored on a four-yard run with 1:32 left to clinch the victory for Tompkins.

Cypress Creek 24, Taylor 14

For the Taylor Mustangs, Friday night’s playoff loss might have been a microcosm for their season—ups and downs aplenty.

The Cougars improve to 7-5. They will play the winner of the Summer Creek-Clear Lake game, which is set for Saturday afternoon at NRG Stadium.

“We got beat by a good team,” Taylor coach Chad Simmons said.

The Mustangs finish with a 6-6 record.

The Cougars scored first on a 41-yard field goal by junior kicker Diego Gracia, but the Mustangs seized on a big kickoff return and a short drive to take the lead on a nine-yard touchdown run by sophomore running back Brandon Campbell. Junior Marcus Grant kicked the extra point, and Taylor led 7-3 at the end of the first quarter.

Cypress Creek reclaimed the lead in the second quarter, when Cougar senior quarterback Julian Brown completed a pass to junior running back Legend Grigsby that went for 80 yards.

The offenses struggled a bit in the game, but picked up the pace in the second half. Taylor fought back to take a third quarter lead, 14-10, with a seven-yard run by Campbell at the 5:52 mark.

On the ensuing possession, the Cougars put together a 76-yard scoring drive, mostly through the passing game. It culminated with a 13-yard touchdown pass from Brown to senior wide receiver Jaden Gray with 3:32 remaining in the third quarter.

The Cougars clinched the game with 1:22 left, when Brown completed a 50-yard touchdown pass to Gray.

“We fought and scrapped until the last second ticked off the clock,” Taylor coach Chad Simmons said.

Simmons is completing his first season as Mustangs coach after serving as defensive coordinator at Cinco Ranch. He succeeded Joe Sheffy, who had been promoted to interim coach following the reassignment of then-coach Trey Hermann. Last year’s squad finished with a 6-5 record and lost to Langham Creek in the area round of the playoffs.

This year’s senior class played for three different head coaches over the past two seasons.

“I think we got better as the season went on,” Simmons said. “We’re starting to put things together and become more consistent. I think they did as well as you could possibly expect.”

Katy 58, Jersey Village 14

This one was all Tigers. Katy improves to 11-1. Jersey Village ends its season at 10-2.

On the first play from scrimmage, Katy sophomore quarterback Bronson McClelland ran a play-action pass play and hit a wide-open junior wide receiver Jordan Patrick for a 68-yard score. Sophomore kicker Nemania Lazic kicked the extra point.

“We knew going into the game what we wanted to do,” McClelland said. “If they were biting on play fakes, we were going to run past them.”

Katy coach Gary Joseph said he thought McClelland did a good job of reading coverages and hitting the open receivers.

“I thought the pass protection was good, and gave him enough time to throw the ball,” Joseph said.

The Falcons fumbled their first play on offense, and Katy sophomore defensive Dalton Johnson recovered at the Jersey Village 43. The Tigers went in for another score, this time coming on a one-yard run by senior running back Deondrick Glass, who returned to the lineup after sitting out the last two games with an injured shoulder.

Katy forced a Falcons punt, and Glass scored on a 63-yard run with 6:28 in the first quarter.

“He did good,” Joseph said. “You could tell he’s working his way back into it. He played a little bit hurt, and I admire the kid for that. Hopefully, he’ll be ready to go next week.”

Katy senior defensive back Jianni Argulo intercepted a pass on the next Falcon possession, and the Tigers put together another scoring drive, capped by a nine-yard run by Glass.

By this time, the Tigers were ahead 28-0, and Jersey Village had two turnovers and a three-and-out to show for its first three possessions of the game.

Overall, Katy rolled up 613 yards total offense to the Jersey Village’s 215 total yards. Joseph said he thinks the defense has improved over the season.

“I thought they tackled well,” Joseph said.

Jersey Village got its only touchdown of the first half on a 10-yard pass from senior quarterback Raymond Richardson to senior running back Christian Peguero with 52 seconds remaining in the first quarter.

Katy scored on its first play of the second half, on a 31-yard run by sophomore running back Sherman Smith. Smith added a second score, this time on a 60-yard run, with 51 seconds left in the third quarter.

Jersey Village scored its other touchdown on the first play of the fourth quarter, on a 42-yard pass from Richardson to sophomore wide receiver Caleb Weaver.

Katy junior kicker Josh Rodriguez kicked a 28-yard field goal with 7:44 left in the game to conclude the scoring.

“The coaches called a great game,” McClelland said. “We just went out there and executed.”

Katy will play North Shore at 7 p.m. Friday at NRG Stadium. North Shore is the only team to beat the Tigers this season, winning in the season opener for both teams on August 31.