CORSICANA — Three offensive plays into the season, Ryan senior running back Tyrone Williams was already seeking redemption.
On the third offensive play, senior running back Tyrone Williams fumbled the ball on Friday night against Corsicana and the Tigers recovered on the Raiders’ side of the field.
But after the night Williams and the Raiders had against the Tigers, the fumble was long forgotten.
The Raiders posted their biggest win since 2011 and defeated Corsicana 38-7 at Tiger Stadium in the season opener for both schools.
“I was pretty frustrated with myself,” Williams said after the fumble. “But [Ryan assistant] coach [Shelton] Gandy told me to keep my head up and look out for the next play.”
Williams maximized the rest of his 10 carries, going for a career-high 214 yards. The senior’s previous career best was a 196-yard rushing effort against Wichita Falls Rider last season, the team Ryan faces on Thursday.
Two drives after the fumble, Williams avoided tacklers in the backfield and broke a 75-yard touchdown run down the right sideline. He finished with three touchdowns on the evening, including a 61-yard touchdown run on a fourth-down play in the third quarter to seal the victory.
Led by Williams and junior running back Maurice Gordon, the Raiders gained 394 of their 425 yards on the ground.
Gordon also had a career night. The junior finished with nine carries for 112 yards and a touchdown. Senior A.J. Anderson joined in the action late and tallied a rushing touchdown after the game had already been decided.
Ryan scored 31 straight points before Corsicana finally got on the scoreboard with 5:56 left in the game.
“The offensive line was pushing [Corsicana’s defensive line] back, and me and Tyrone were able to make cutbacks in the backfield,” Gordon said.
Last season, Ryan needed a big second-half comeback to defeat Corsicana in the season-opening game.
This season, no comeback was necessary.
Corsicana couldn’t convert on key fourth downs early in the first half, allowing Ryan to dig a deep pit that trapped the Tigers.
Corsicana penetrated inside Ryan’s 30-yard line on three separate occasions in the first half and failed to come up with any points by the time the halftime buzzer sounded.
Corsicana had ample opportunities to take an early lead. Ryan quarterback Mitchell Bridges threw an interception, Williams fumbled and wide receiver Trent Willis dropped a touchdown that led to a botched fake punt by Ryan.
Despite all of those things, including the last two on the same drive, the Tigers couldn’t make the Raiders pay for their transgressions, and soon enough, it was Ryan which pushed ahead.
Williams scored his 75-yard touchdown run with three minutes to go in the first quarter, and the rout was on.
Corsicana sophomore running back Lamontra Owens led the Tigers with 12 carries for 106 yards and a touchdown. Senior quarterback Devontay Bell, who was coming off an anterior cruciate ligament injury suffered last season, completed 12 of 24 passes for 83 yards.
But it was Ryan’s running game that thrived on Friday night.
“We’ve got some talented kids at running back,” Florence said. “They were daring us to run the ball. They kind of had us covered up there, and it was a challenge to run it. But I was proud of us. I thought we did a good job running the football.”
BEN BABY can be reached at 940-566-6869 and via Twitter at @Ben_Baby.
Ryan 38, Corsicana 7
R— Tyrone Williams 75 run (Marc Orozco kick)
R — Tyrone Williams 12 run (Orozco kick)
R — Marc Orozco 37 FG
R — Tyrone Williams 61 run (Orozco kick)
R — Maurice Gordon 33 run (Orozco kick)
C — Lamontra Owens 25 run (Ryan Condley kick)
R — A.J. Anderson 3 run (Orozco kick)
Rushing — CI: Lamontra Owens 21-106, DeVontay Bell 18-85, Hector Calvillo 1-18, Donovan Fields 4-1, Team Stat 2--2, DR: Tyrone Williams 11-214, Maurice Gordon 9-112, Mitchell Bridges 7-48, Shomari Cann 5-19, Wesley Ellis 1-8, A.J. Anderson 4-6, Team Stat 3--13.
Passing — CI: DeVontay Bell 12-24-0-83, DR: Mitchell Bridges 4-10-1-31, Cole Carpenter 0-1-0-0.
Receiving — CI: Ty’Garius Sheffield 6-53, Lakeem Christmas 2-19, Hector Calvillo 2-6, Ralph Watts 1-3, Lamontra Owens 1-2, DR: Paul Hunter 2-20, Danny Meza 1-12, Trent Willis 1--1.