After falling to Celina 24-22 in the regular-season finale, the Aubrey Chaparrals are pitted against Canton in a Class 4A Division II bi-district playoff matchup this week.
The loss to the Bobcats was a heartbreaking one for the Chaparrals, as the team entered the year with hopes of sending a talented senior class out with a victory over their archrivals. And the loss set Aubrey up in a difficult spot in the Region II bracket, as a loaded Pleasant Grove team looks to face the winner of Friday night's game.
Before Aubrey can worry about the No. 8 Hawks, it will need to move past a Canton team that is on a roll having won three straight games. The Eagles knocked off Dallas Lincoln 41-13 last week and finished second in District 6-4A, but Canton hasn't beaten a team with a winning record this season. The Eagles' six wins have come against teams with a combined record of 19-41.
Aubrey will need to bounce back quickly from the loss to Celina and jump on Canton early behind a high-powered rushing attack that has given teams fits over the last few seasons. The Chaparrals have won a playoff game in back-to-back years under coach Keith Ivy.
Aubrey has been using a variety of weapons in the backfield since losing Washington State commit Gatlin Grisso for the season with a torn ACL, and Ivy will continue to use a backfield by committee. Sheldon Wingert, Pablo Vera, Will Dow, Spencer Neumann and Brody Bounds have seen time as the featured back at one time or another throughout the year.
The Chaparrals defeated Canton 41-21 last year and will look to advance to the area round for the third straight season by repeating that result.
Lake Dallas vs. Frisco Reedy
Where: Frisco's Ford Center at The Star
Time: 7 p.m. Friday
Records: Lake Dallas (6-4), Frisco Reedy (9-1)
What's on the line: After a one-year absence, Lake Dallas is back in the postseason. Its opening matchup is no stepping stone. The Falcons play a one-loss Frisco Reedy squad that made the playoffs for the first time in the school's short history. The Lions' only loss was to Frisco Lone Star, which the Falcons lost to in a triple-overtime thriller in the state semifinals in 2015.
Pilot Point vs. Grandview
Where: Grand Prairie's Gopher Bowl
Time: 7:30 p.m. Friday
Records: Grandview (9-1), Pilot Point (3-7)
What's on the line: First-year Pilot Point coach Danny David wasted no time getting the Bearcats back into the playoffs. But a first-round matchup against Grandview is less than ideal, as the Zebras are one of the most explosive teams in the state offensively. Pilot Point has experience against tough teams this season after playing Muenster, Gunter and Brock in nondistrict play. The Bearcats are searching for their first playoff win since 2014.
Argyle at Snyder
Where: Tiger Stadium
Time: 7 p.m. Friday
Records: Argyle (10-0), Snyder (2-8)
What's on the line: Argyle may have lost star quarterback Jon Copeland for the season a few weeks ago, but the Eagles responded well by handling Wichita Falls Hirschi and blowing past Burkburnett. Now the team will look to get the first win of what it hopes will be an extended playoff run. Snyder flipped for home-field advantage and won, so the Eagles will have to travel almost four hours. Argyle is 10-0 and has played in only one game decided by less than three touchdowns.
Sanger vs. Stephenville
Where: Saginaw's Roughrider Stadium
Time: 7 p.m. Friday
Records: Sanger (4-6), Stephenville (8-2)
What's on the line: Sanger finished fourth in District 4-4A following its loss to Decatur and will have a tough first-round opponent in Stephenville, which has returned to form as one of the top teams in the state this year. The Yellow Jackets have a balanced offensive attack led by QB Easton Jones (1,827 yards, 21 TDs) and RB Krece Nowak (1,175 yards, 11 TDs).
Liberty Christian at Dallas Bishop Dunne
Where: Dallas Bishop Dunne
Time: 2 p.m. Saturday
Records: Liberty Christian (6-4), Dallas Bishop Dunne (5-4)
What's on the line: The Liberty Christian Warriors fell to rival Fort Worth Nolan Catholic, which shook up their playoff picture. With the loss, Liberty is now favored in a rematch against Dallas Bishop Dunne, a team the Warriors defeated 33-26 two weeks ago. Bishop Dunne knocked out Liberty in last year's playoffs, giving the Warriors plenty to play for this time around.