In the tightly contested District 5-4A standings where several teams are jockeying for playoff positioning, the Fort Worth Brewer Bears improved their playoff chances while putting Denton in a precarious position with a 45-13 victory over the Broncos on homecoming night at Bronco Field on Friday night.
“It was a big win for them, and it could have been a big win for us,” Denton head coach Kevin Atkinson said. “It doesn’t mean we are out yet. We still have to get better. It’s going to be harder on us, but it will make it taste better.”
Brewer senior quarterback Skyler Howard led the Bears with 215 yards passing with two touchdowns to go along with 89 yards and two more touchdowns on 15 carries. Conversely, for the Broncos, they struggled to run the ball against a Brewer defense that allowed only 124 total yards.
“We are a little injured in some areas and so, to try to cover that up, we went to some two-tight end stuff,” Atkinson said. “We didn’t execute very well and that’s probably the thing that concerns me the most.”
With the Broncos falling behind in several of their games this season, they needed a strong start to the game. However, Wendell Williams fumbled on the first offensive play, and the Bears recovered at the Denton 7-yard line.
It didn’t take the Bears long to capitalize on the turnover as Howard found C.J. Washington for a 5-yard touchdown for a 7-0 lead only 26 seconds into the game.
Washington, the district’s leading rusher from last season, also tallied three touchdowns on the night with 48 yards on 16 carries to go along with 67 yards receiving.
It seemed like deja vu for the Broncos on the ensuing kickoff as senior Monroe Huband muffed it at his own 5-yard line, but he was able to scoop up the floundering football and outrace the Brewer defense down the middle of the field for a 95-yard touchdown. The Broncos trailed 7-6 after a failed 2-point conversion attempt.
Then, Atkinson pulled a trick play out of his hat as the Broncos recovered an onside kick at the Brewer 34-yard line. However, the Bears held the Denton offense scoreless as a three-and-out led to a punt for a touchback.
The Bears looked to build off their defensive stand as they benefited from several third-down Denton penalties on their way to a 1-yard touchdown run up the middle from Howard, giving the Bears a 14-6 lead with 3:27 remaining in the first quarter.
“We are not a very disciplined team right now and that is something we are going to have to really work on,” Atkinson said. “That’s definitely a concern for me and my coaching staff and we are going to address that on Monday. We need to learn how to be disciplined in adverse situations.”
After another three-and-out by the Denton offense, the Bears used two more personal foul penalties by the Broncos to position themselves for a 21-yard field goal by junior Eder Valenzuela, pushing the lead to 17-6 early in the second quarter.
Needing a response from their offense, the Broncos squandered decent field position after a solid kick return and were forced to punt again.
On Brewer’s ensuing possession, the Bears rode big run plays by Howard and Washington before Washington punched in a 2-yard touchdown to put the Bears up 24-6 with 4:38 remaining in the first half.
With the Bears receiving the ball to start the half, Denton needed a stop on defense. The Broncos were able to force a Brewer punt, but they were unable to climb back into the game as their drive ended with a Tanner Smith sack of Denton’s Cy Ward on fourth down for the turnover.
“That was the one we really needed to have,” Atkinson said. “We were bad down-and-distance-wise, which means we didn’t execute on first downs. We have to get better, point blank. It’s a hard time. When you lose like that on homecoming, it’s very hard. We need to stay together and not pull ourselves apart.”
Eight plays later, Howard scored his third touchdown of the game on a 2-yard quarterback keeper up the middle to give the Bears a 31-6 lead with 4:51 remaining in the third quarter.
After yet another lackluster offensive drive by Denton, Washington capped a nine-play drive with a sweeping, 7-yard touchdown to the left to give Brewer a 38-6 lead.
Howard threw his second passing touchdown of the night when he found junior tight end Cole Wallis for a 2-yard touchdown to make it 45-6.
Denton senior quarterback Luke Satterfield replaced Ward, who threw for 70 yards on 11-of-18 passing, in the late stages of the game and found junior Adarian Harris for a 24-yard touchdown.
PATRICK HAYSLIP can be reached at 940-566-6873. His e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org .
Fort Worth Brewer 45, Denton 13
B — C.J. Washington 5 pass from Skyler Howard (Eder Valenzuela kick) 11:34
D — Monroe Huband 95 kickoff return (Failed Conversion) 11:17
B — Howard 1 rush (Valenzuela kick) 3:27
B — Valenzuela 21 kick 11:41
B — Washington 2 run (Valenzuela kick) 4:38
B — Howard 2 rush (Valenzuela kick) 4:51
B — Washington 7 rush (Valenzuela kick) :03
B — Cole Wallis 2 pass from Howard (Valenzuela kick) 4:50
D — Adarian Harris 24 pass from Luke Satterfield (Michael Husbands kick) 3:09
Rushing — B: Colby Morris 4-6, Skyler Howard 15-89, C.J. Washington 16-48, Chris Gibson 3-19; D: Wendell Williams 1-2, Tre’Von Jackson 6-21, Cy Ward 7-(-23), Deandre Coleman 1-1, Deavonte Doucet 3-10.
Passing — B: Skyler Howard 18-28-0 215, Colby Morris 0-1-0 0; D: Cy Ward 11-18-0 70, Luke Satterfield 3-4-0 43.
Receiving — B: C.J. Washington 4-67, Josh Martinez 5-83, Chris Gibson 6-45, Jonah Guardiola 1-3, Austyn Ables 1-15, Cole Wallis 1-2; D: Wendell Williams 1-2, Daniel Wilson 2-18, Deandre Coleman 4-26, Tre’Von Jackson 3-33, Adarian Harris 2-32, Deavonte Doucet 1-(-2), Ryan Daniels 1-4.