FORT WORTH — In the practices leading up to Friday night’s game against Fort Worth Western Hills, the Denton Broncos imagined putting together a complete game to send them into their bye week on an upswing.
What transpired at Farrington Field was more than a complete game; it was a resounding statement to the rest of the district that Denton is a force to be recognized after its 63-0 win to improve its record to 2-1 heading into District 5-4A play in two weeks.
“You have to envision it,” senior running back Deavonte Doucet said. “I didn’t know what we were getting into. We did everything in practice right and we came and did the same thing. We attacked, we were getting first downs moving the ball, minimizing penalties and being a fundamentally sound, scoring machine. We are a turned-around program and we are ready to prove to Denton that we are a turned-around program come district time.”
Doucet was just one of the offensive superstars for the Broncos, racking up three touchdowns and 89 yards on only 10 carries. Sophomore Xavier Scott also had two touchdowns on the night, while senior fullback Deontrae Murray added a touchdown and 85 yards rushing.
Senior quarterback Cy Ward was 11-of-12 passing for 185 yards and a touchdown to senior wideout Ke’Von Buris, who also returned a punt 52 yards for a touchdown.
“We have a lot of weapons,” Denton head coach Kevin Atkinson said. “We spread the ball around. There isn’t one receiver that’s way ahead of the other in receptions. Both running backs have done a nice job executing, and I don’t think anybody can say, ‘We have to stop this guy,’ and that’s what you want as an offensive scheme.”
On the Broncos’ first possession, Doucet scored his first touchdown on a 3-yard run out of the spread formation to give Denton a 7-0 lead just four and a half minutes into the game.
After the Denton’s defense suffocated the Cougars’ offense into another 3-and-out on their next possession, the Broncos’ special teams came up with their first significant play of the season as Buris’ punt return gave them a quick 14-0 advantage with 6:02 remaining in the first quarter.
With the Cougars again surrendering prime field position to Denton at its 43-yard line, the Broncos used a balance of run and pass with Scott racking up 28 yards on the drive, including the final 8 yards that gave Denton a 21-0 lead with 1:13 left in the quarter.
On the Broncos’ first possession of the second quarter, Doucet was able to expose the Western Hills’ defense for several strong runs. Amassing 53 first-half yards, Doucet notched his second touchdown of the half on a 12-yard scurry up the middle of the field, giving Denton a 28-0 lead with 8:31 left in the second quarter.
Later, a high snap on a Cougars’ punt gave Denton the ball at their own 22. After getting pushed back by a penalty, the Broncos used a 30-yard catch-and-run by senior Deandre Coleman to get down to the 2-yard line. On the next play, Ward found Buris on an inside slant route for the touchdown to give Denton a 35-0 lead with just over two minutes left in the half.
“We were taking what the defense gave us,” Atkinson said. “We were fundamentally sound and it all starts up front. Our offensive line did an outstanding job. Both quarterbacks did a good job reading defenses and we did a good job catching the ball and being where we were supposed to be. Now we have to build on that. A young team can become complacent and it’s going to be our jobs as coaches to grind them and continue to get better.”
With the half nearly over, the Cougars surrendered a 62-yard interception return by junior defensive back Gabriel Aranda for a TD with less than two seconds remaining in the half to send the Broncos to the locker room with a commanding 42-0 lead.
It didn’t take but two and a half minutes for the Broncos to make it 49-0 coming out of halftime as they returned the kickoff to the Cougars’ 40-yard line. Doucet later banged in his third touchdown of the game with a 24-yard run up the middle.
The Broncos added another touchdown in the third quarter on a 1-yard run by Scott before a 6-yard touchdown run by senior fullback Murray in the fourth quarter finished the scoring.
“In the second half, a lot of our backups were in the game and I was proud our starters were happy for them,” Atkinson said. “It’s the first shutout we’ve had since this regime has been here. I’m proud that we pitched a shutout because shutouts are hard to get. You want to play your backups and there’s a lot of credit for them stepping up and executing.”
PATRICK HAYSLIP can be reached at 940-566-6873 and via Twitter at @PatrickHayslip.
Denton 63, Fort Worth Western Hills 0
FW Western Hills
DN — Deavonte Doucet 3 run (Michael Husbands kick)
DN — Ke’Von Buris 52 punt return (Michael Husbands kick)
DN — Xavier Scott 8 run (Michael Husbands kick)
DN — Deavonte Doucet 12 run (Michael Husbands kick)
DN — Ke’Von Buris 2 pass from Cy Ward (Michael Husbands kick)
DN — Gabriel Aranda 56 interception return (Michael Husbands kick)
DN — Deavonte Doucet 24 run (Michael Husbands kick)
DN — Xavier Scott 1 run (Michael Husbands kick)
DN — Deontrae Murray 6 run (Michael Husbands kick)
Rushing — DN: Deavonte Doucet 10-89, Deontrae Murray 9-85, Xavier Scott 5-35, Javier Noriega 2-16, Cy Ward 1-13, Adrian Harris 3-13, Christian Rodriguez 2--5, WH: Alazai Goodlow 5-65, Raekwon Neal 9-62, Lonnie Hall 14-40, Desmond Mize 9-12, Christian Garcia 1-0, Carlton Hudgins 1--1.
Passing — DN: Cy Ward 11-12-0-185, Christian Rodriguez 5-5-0-57, WH: Christian Garcia 4-11-0-25.
Receiving — DN: Xavier Scott 1-68, Adrian Harris 3-55, Deandre Coleman 2-42, Ke’Von Buris 4-38, Key’andre Hearvey 3-22, Christian Rodriguez 1-11, Jacob Audirsch 1-10, Javier Noriega 1--4, WH: Raekwon Neal 2-15, Lonnie Hall 1-8, Desmond Mize 1-2.