Football to visit Kaufman for first round of playoffs


Grace Nguyen

Jahi Rainey celebrates after a touchdown against Frisco.

After missing out on claiming home field advantage a week ago, the football team (7-2 overall, 6-2 district) will be forced to hit the road to take on the Kaufman Lions (7-2, 6-2) in the first round of the District 5A Region II playoffs tomorrow at 7 p.m.

Assistant coach Dustin Gunter said his team has the opportunity to bounce back against a hungry Kaufman squad.

“They just moved up to 5A, and we’ve been telling our guys all week that it’s a small town environment,” Gunter said. “They’re trying to make a name for themselves with a win in the first round.”

The Lions will look to defend their home den after winning five of their last six regular season games. The only two blemishes on Kaufman’s record come in the form of losses to Corsicana and Royse City, though both of those contests were only lost by a combined 13 points. Senior quarterback Trey Collier has passed for 1,030 yards on the season with 13 passing touchdowns and nine rushing touchdowns, while senior running back Kev’on Butler is averaging eight yards per carry to complement seven touchdowns thus far.


Kaitlin Anderson
The Leopards and Lions each average over 30 points per game on offense.

Senior defensive lineman
Luke Stine said the Kaufman offense is predicated on establishing the run game.

“Their offense is a running offense,” Stine said. “Our goal is to stop the run and make sure the quarterback does not escape the pocket.”

On the other side of the ball, the Lion defense varies its looks, according to senior wide receiver Jacob Terwilliger.

“They mix it up quite a bit,” Terwilliger said. “We are going to find ways to spread them out and attack the middle of the field.”

Terwilliger was a catalyst for the Leopards’ offensive success last week, as the wideout notched 200 yards in the air in addition to two touchdowns. Senior quarterback Carson Collins accrued 521 passing yards and three touchdowns, but the 34-16 deficit at halftime proved to be insurmountable, though the Leopards had a chance to score and win the game on their final drive.

If the Leopards were to knock off Kaufman tonight, they would face the winner of tonight’s matchup between the first-ranked team in the 5A Division II, Aledo, and Seagoville in the second round of the playoffs.