WACO, Texas- The Allen Eagles have won four state titles since 1999 and will now have a chance for their fifth as the Eagles soared past Cedar Ridge 28-7 at McLane Stadium in Baylor.
Allen (15-0) entered the game with Cedar Ridge (13-2) riding a 14-game win streak, while outscoring their opponents 603-213. However, it was one of the toughest challenges they had all season long.
The Eagles offense was nonexistent for much of the first half, but after a 56-yard fumble return by Tkai Lloyd, Brock Sturges (88 yards, 2 touchdowns) put Allen on the board with a 3-yard touchdown run.
The Raiders were making their first semifinal appearance in school history and their defense was uptor the task. Cedar Ridge recorded five sacks during the first half, four of them credited to Daymond Williams.
Both teams traded punts yet again after the initial Allen touchdown, when the Eagles were able to recover another fumble at the Cedar Ridge 36-yard line. Allen was able to capitalize on the turnover once more, by putting together an eight-play drive capped off with a 30-yard touchdown pass from Grant Tisdale to Theo Wease.
Cedar Ridge starting quarterback Ezikell Coss was forced to exit the game with an injury he sustained making the touchdown saving tackle on the Tkai Lloyd fumble return.
Coss would re-enter the game in the third quarter and put together a promising drive, but after taking a shot on an incomplete pass he was forced to leave the game again. Jalen Brown would take over for Coss, but he threw an interception that ended the drive.
The Raiders attempted a fake punt inside their 20 yard line, but Allen was ready and Cedar Ridge was penalized for an intentional grounding call that set up another Brock Sturges touchdown run from two yards out.
Cedar Ridge finally got the offense going, as Ezekiel Coss connected with Jaylen Ellis on a 71 yard touchdown pass, but it was to little too late. Luke Jaksick found himself in perfect position to pick off Coss and take it to the house for the Eagles.
Allen will play Lake Travis for the 6A D1 State Championship at 3 p.m. CST Saturday at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
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