Jasper defeats Madisonville in regular season finale

Fpptball with laces out. Stock photo
Fpptball with laces out. Stock photoRich Johnson of Spectacle Photo / Rich Johnson of Spectacle Photo/Getty Images/Flickr RF

With all the difficulties and problems that the Jasper Bulldogs had at the beginning of the season, to battle back and earn second place in District 10-4A Division II is a testament to the hard work and dedication by the coaches and athletes in Jasper.

“Our kids never gave up they battled in practice and in games and they got better as the season progressed,” head coach Darrell Barbay said. “For a coach you can’t ask for anything more than that from your team.”

The game opened with the Bulldogs fumbling on their first two possessions, but the Mustangs only managed two field goal attempts even though they started both drives inside the Jasper 41 yard line. Jasper’s defense blocked the first field goal attempt, but Madisonville converted on their second attempt to take a 3-0 lead.

The second quarter was most likely the best that Jasper has played offensively all season. Early in the second quarter with a fourth down at the Mustangs 38 yard line, quarterback Zikice Simmons connected with Jermario Thomas for a touchdown. Ayden Garcia’s PAT kick put the Bulldogs up 7-3 with 11:38 left in the quarter.

Thomas scored again on Jasper’s next possession on a fourth down play, but this time he took a lateral pass and connected with Tylee Adams for a 33-yards to increase the lead 14-3.

Madisonville responded on their next possession as their quarterback raced 68 yards for a touchdown to trim the lead to 14-10.

Tyanthony Smith blocked a punt on the Mustangs’ next possession giving the Bulldogs excellent field position at the Madisonville 23 yard line. Adams scored his second touchdown of the game on a 16-yard run with 3:54 remaining in the first half. The PAT kick was blocked, and the lead was held to 10 points, 20-10.

Another Mustang field goal made the score 20-13, but Jasper was not done.

A good kick off return put the Bulldogs in the Mustangs end of the field with 1:45 left before halftime. Simmons threw his second touchdown pass of the evening when he tossed a swing pass to Kenyan Vidito. The Bulldogs made the two-point conversion bringing the score to 28-13.

On the Mustangs first possession of the second half, Thomas intercepted a pass and raced 80 yards for a pick-six, which made the score 35-13. Jasper held the Mustangs offense at bay the entire second half and the game ended with Jasper on top 35-13.

Barbay called it a “great win, and that in 10 years the Dawgs have won six district championships and finished 2nd the other four year. I am proud of these kids!”

Jasper will play the Connally Cadets in the bi-district round Thursday at 7:30 p.m. in Whitehouse.