Bulletin Staff Report

The Brownwood Lions, who already have berths in both the small schools and large schools FSN Southwest 7-on-7 State Championship Tournament next month, won two of three games Saturday as hosts of a 16-team qualifier.

Wichita Falls High and Temple captured berths in the Class 4A and 5A tournament, an event that also saw Class 2A rivals Early and Bangs competing. Neither Brown County team reached the semifinals, and information on their games was not immediately available Saturday.

The Lions defeated Eastland 45-13 in their first pool game Saturday morning, then lost to 2007 7-on-7 Class 4A champion Georgetown 38-32. Brownwood came back to defeat San Antonio Clark 37-35 in the third and last game. The Lions could not advance to the semifinal or final game, played at Gordon Wood Stadium, because the team had already qualified for state.

“Every pool was tough,” Coach Mitch Moore, Brownwood 7-on-7 coordinator, said. “It was a pretty good challenge. We got off to a slow start against Georgetown, and got down by three touchdowns, but we fought back and played better and made it close.”

It was the last tournament in which the Lions will play before the state tournament in College Station July 10-12. Moore said the Lions will compete in the smaller schools tournament, July 10-11.

“We’ve decided to play where we’ll play in the fall,” Moore said, after realignment by the UIL put Brownwood High in Class 3A after decades of competing in Class 4A, or the second largest class in the state. “That will be good for the team.”

Moore said the tournament was well-attended, and it went off smoothly. The Saturday morning pool play was held at Brownwood High School, then the semifinals and finals game were played at Gordon Wood Stadium after lunch.

“People who might have driven by Brownwood High School Saturday morning would have seen people everywhere,” Moore said. “The field was covered up, and the teams competed hard. We had 16 teams playing, and they came from as far away as San Antonio, Wichita Falls and Temple. And there were some of the state’s top (college) prospects out there.”

Moore said the Lions will continue to work during the two weeks they have before the state tournament.

The Brownwood tournament is one of 32 qualifying events, held on high school campuses around the state, to determine the 64 teams that will play in the state championship tournament.

7-on-7 football is used by Texas high schools as an off-season workout program to promote and improve the quality of quarterbacks, receivers, secondary players and linebackers. High school programs throughout Texas organize teams and participate in a summer league that culminates with the FSN Southwest state championship tournament in July.

To comply with UIL rules, active coaches are prohibited from instructing players during games.

The 7-on-7 format emphasizes passing, using a 45-yard field and a one-hand touch for a tackle. All players, except the center, are eligible receivers. The game is played in two 20-minute continuous halves. Uniforms consist of shorts and T-shirts with no pads or helmets.

High schools from all UIL classifications may qualify for the state tournament at one of the 32 qualifying tournaments held at various locations during the months leading up to the championship tournament.