ALLEN, Texas — Coppell has made a statement.
The Cowboys scored 20 unanswered points in the second half and came away with a 34-24 victory over Mesquite Horn High School in a highly anticipated 6A DI area round matchup Friday at Eagle Stadium.
“We actually didn’t make any adjustments,” Coppell Head Coach Mike Dewitt said. “We told the kids just do what we do. Just relax and go play football.”
Coppell entered halftime down 24-14 with what seemed like no momentum. But that all changed midway through the third quarter.
After an interception by Justin Murray at the 1-yard line, Coppell pieced together a 99-yard drive that included a circus catch by Reese Walker, a fourth down conversion on a Brady McBride run and a 28-yard touchdown by Jonathan McGill.
Following another key defensive stop, Coppell put together another long drive. This time the Cowboys marched 96 yards for a score as McBride sprinted into the end zone from 15 yards out and took a 27-24 lead.
Mesquite Horn fumbled at midfield on the ensuing drive, and Coppell put the game away thanks to another McBride touchdown run late in the fourth quarter.
“We got some momentum,” Dewitt said. “Especially that interception. That was huge. We had an opportunity to make plays like that in the first half and didn’t. The fact that we were able to respond in the second half was great.”
Overall, the Coppell defense forced three turnovers, made several key stops at pivotal moments and held an explosive Mesquite Horn offense to no second-half points.
“We took the first half personally,” said McGill, who played both running back and safety. “They didn’t make a lot of plays on us in the second half. They didn’t have a lot of gains. We limited explosive plays and forced some turnovers.”
Mesquite Horn was on a roll early in the game. After giving up a touchdown in the first few minutes of the game, Mesquite Horn outplayed Coppell on both sides of the ball to take a 10-point halftime lead. But the second half was a completely different story.
“We needed a game like this,” Dewitt said. “I’m excited about moving forward.”
Coppell moves on to the regional semifinals, where it will face the winner of Klein Oak and Round Rock Cedar Ridge at McLane Stadium in Waco.
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