Leopards run up the score in annual homecoming game

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Caroline Dolberry

Junior running back no. 4 Dante Dean runs the ball towards the end zone. The Leopards won the homecoming game 59-7 against Terrell.

The annual homecoming football game took place at Leopard Stadium against the Terrell Tigers under the lights on Friday. The Leopards locked in a 59-7 win bouncing back after a loss against North Crowley last week. 

“I think the team bounced back from some tough tests through our pre-district schedule that brought the boys closer together as a team,” running backs coach Matthew Cannon said. “Their desire to grow and get better each week is very apparent.” 

All three quarterbacks saw the field during Friday’s blowout victory. Seniors Brayden Hagle, Austin Gonzalez and Junior Alexander Franklin combined for a total of 177 passing yards on Friday night. 

“The offense played pretty well Friday; we didn’t start the way we wanted to but we bounced back and put some points up on the board,” senior receiver Kyle Parker said. “I’m most excited about just getting to play with my teammates. I’ve been building new bonds and we’ve been growing as a team”

Defensively, the Leopards held the Tigers to 52 pass yards while forcing two fumbles. 

“The defense showed a lot of maturity this past game because we didn’t let bad calls from the refs and big plays from Terrell affect our gameplay,” senior defensive back Gabe Joyner said. “Our secondary has a lot of depth and we are able to roll in multiple guys at corner and safety without any drop off in performance.” 

Seniors Kyle Parker, Jaxson Lavender and Blake Redding contributed to Friday’s blowout win. Juniors Parker Livingstone and Ridge Barker all had one touchdown each. Livingstone and sophomore Daylan McCutcheon also were a part of the 172 total receiving yards Friday night. 

“It’s great being a part of the receiving core we have, everybody learns and builds from each other,” Parker said. “We’re basically like a family and we are always looking to make plays on Friday night.” 

Junior running back Matthew Mainord led the way Friday night rushing for 162 yards and four touchdowns alongside Dante Dean and Khalin Williams. These three combined for 392 yards. 

  “The running backs played well on Friday, as a coaching staff we challenged them all week to finish runs and refuse to be tackled,” Cannon said. “ We had numerous broken tackles and great runs throughout the entire game.”

The Leopards are heading to Denison with a 2-2 record this Friday for their second district matchup of the year. The Yellow Jackets have started their season off with a 3-1 record.

“We have a great coaching staff that works really hard to make sure we have the best game plan each week,” Joyner said.