Brownwood finishes first year under Maxfield at 6-4

SAN ANGELO — Twelve months after the Brownwood Lions brought the Andrews Mustangs’ football campaign to an end, the favor was returned Friday night at San Angelo Stadium.

At the site of last year’s 17-13 victory for the Lions in Division I-4A Region I area playoff action, the Mustangs prevailed, 59-38, as Brownwood’s first season under head coach Kyle Maxfield came to a close.

The night got off to an ugly start for the Lions (6-4) and took more than a half to improve as Andrews (11-1) opened a 14-0 advantage less than two minutes into the contest. Brownwood trailed by as many as 38 points early in the third period, but was able to close the gap to three touchdowns at the end of the night.

“It just seemed like we were snake bit in the first half,” Maxfield said. “Special teams got us in a 14-0 hole before we ever took an offensive snap. And you have to give credit to Andrews for really executing well; they took advantage of our mistakes and made some big plays. I was proud of the way the kids responded in the second half even though they knew it was an uphill battle.”

The Lions finished with 438 yards of total offense, including 286 yards rushing, as — behind the line of Liam McCraw, Blaize Infinger, Colby Coppic, Carson Benedict and Wyatt Jacobs — Gavin Jefferson rushed for 134 yards and a touchdown and Harley Price finished with 117 yards and three trips to the end zone.

McLane Moore connected on 14 of 19 passes for 152 yards with a touchdown to Jeremy Brown, who hauled in a team-high six catches for 106 yards and also chipped in a 25-yard score on the ground.

The Lions turned the ball over five times — but so did Andrews.

However, the Lions yielded a 103-yard kick return to Keegan Thompson to open the game, failed to recover the ensuing kickoff which led to a 44-yard scoring toss from Triston Williams to Josh Gabaldon, and had their first touchdown of the game negated due to penalty — all in the first six minutes.

In the second period, a fumble at the Andrews 2 following a 38-yard reception triggered a run of three consecutive Brownwood drives that ended in turnovers, which the Mustangs turned into 17 points and a 38-7 halftime advantage. Brownwood had a punt bounce off a player that Andrews recovered and the Mustangs picked off a pass during its closing surge.

“Knowing how explosive Andrews’ offense is, being down 14-0 before you take an offensive snap can be disheartening,” Maxfield said, “Then we had the touchdown called back and the fumble at the 2, those plays would have kept us in the game. We just didn’t get the breaks when we needed them.”

The Mustangs also generated 520 yards of total offense, including 452 passing as Williams connected on 26 of 37 attempts with six touchdowns — five of 20 yards or more and three covering in excess of 40 yards.

“As good as our defense has been playing, it’s surprising to a certain extent,” Maxfield said of the number of big plays allowed. “But watching Andrews on film, we knew they had that capability. We thought we’d get a little more pressure on their quarterback, but when you give a guy like that as much time as he had, he’s going to find open guys somewhere.”

Trailing 38-7 at halftime — with the only Brownwood points coming on an 8-yard Jefferson touchdown run and Rylan Reagan PAT — the Lions yielded a 47-yard scoring toss from Williams to Noah Lujan just 2:56 into the second half after Brownwood fumbled the ball away on its initial possession of the third period.

The Lions finally gained their footing when Price scored on a 14-yard carry to trim the deficit to 45-14 with 3:47 left in the third period.

Andrews snapped the ball over the punter’s head for a 26-yard loss on the next possession, which led to another Price touchdown — a 5-yard carry — that brought the Lions within 45-20 with 1:31 left in the third.

The Mustangs answered with a 59-yard scoring toss from Williams to Thompson — who finished with 137 receiving yards on five catches — to extend the lead to 52-20, but the next two touchdowns belonged to the Lions on carries of 1 yard by Price and 25 yards by Brown.

Price’s touchdown was set up by a Grant Fanara interception, while Brown’s came after Fanara recovered an Andrews fumble. Quincin Eagle recovered two fumbles in the first half for the Lions while Hunter Mares pounced on a second-half loose ball to account for the five takeaways.

Down 52-32 with 6:28 left, the Lions allowed a 31-yard touchdown run to Torrey Kelly — who rushed for a team-high 97 yards and caught a team-best six passes for 62 yards — which iced the game with 2:17 left.

The Lions tacked on a final touchdown with 1:17 to go as Moore connected with Brown on a 12-yard scoring toss for the final 21-point margin.

As for his first season in Brownwood, Maxfield said, “ I couldn’t be more thankful to have this team and these seniors for my first year. It’s been very memorable in a lot of ways, a lot of great memories. And this is something we can build on and take to the next level from here.”

Andrews will advance to face Levelland — an 82-73 winner over Decatur Friday night — in the third round. Andrews and Levelland squared off earlier this season with the Mustangs picking up a 77-76 overtime victory.

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Andrews 59, Lions 38

SCORE BY QUARTERS

Andrews 14 24 14 7 - 59

Brownwood 7 0 13 18 - 38

SCORING SUMMARY

A: Keegan Thompson 103 kick return (Rodolfo Garcia kick), 11:46, 1st

A: Jose Gabaldon 44 pass from Triston Williams (Garcia kick), 10:46, 1st

B: Gavin Jefferson 8 run (Rylan Reagan kick), 1:03, 1st

A: Torrey Kelly 13 pass from Thompson (Garcia kick), 11:56, 2nd

A: Garcia 40 FG, 6:27, 2nd

A: Hayden Rochell 23 pass from Williams (Garcia kick), 3:14, 2nd

A: Kelly 32 pass from Williams (Garcia kick), 0:54, 2nd

A: Noah Lujan 47 pass from Williams (Garcia kick), 9:04, 3rd

B: Harley Price 14 run (Reagan kick), 3:47, 3rd

B: Price 5 run (kick failed), 1:31, 3rd

A: Thompson 59 pass from Williams (Garcia kick), 0:37, 3rd

B: Price 1 run (PAT failed), 6:47, 4th

B: Jeremy Brown 25 run (PAT failed), 6:28, 4th

A: Kelly 31 run (Garcia kick), 2:17, 4th

B: Brown 12 pass from McLane Moore (PAT failed), 1:17, 4th

TEAM STATS

A B

First Downs 20 20

Total Offense 520 438

Rushes-Yards 29-68 42-286

Passing Yards 452 152

C-A-I 26-37-1 13-19-1

Fumbles Lost 4 4

Penalties 8-55 10-71

Punts 1-37.0 4-33.7

PLAYER STATS

Rushing

A: Torrey Kelly 19-97, Britin Garcia 1-2, Triston Williams 6-(-2), Team 3-(-31). B: Gavin Jefferson 22-134, Harley Price 14-117, Jeremy Brown 1-25, Crystan Wright 2-13, McLane Moore 3-(-3).

Passing

A: Williams 26-37-1-452. B: Moore 14-19-1-152, Jefferson 0-1-0-0.

Receiving

A: Kelly 6-62, Keegan Thompson 5-137, Hayden Rochell 5-95, Jose Gabaldon 5-78, Noah Lujan 3-58, Beau Narrell 2-22. B: Brown 6-106, Blaine Hughes 2-24, Wright 2-10, Jefferson 2-2, Patrick Nash 1-6, Corleone Pressley 1-4.