ARLINGTON, Texas -- Just where the
football team fits in the national rankings is open to debate.
But on Saturday, the Tigers removed any doubt that at least in Texas, they are No. 1.
With senior running back
running for five touchdowns, the No. 2 team in the Xcellent 25 National Football Rankings wrapped up a perfect 16-0 season and the Class 5A Division II state championship, defeating Cedar Hill (Texas)
35-24 before 42,621 at Cowboys Stadium.
Taylor, a Nebraska commit who missed much of 2011 with a knee injury, carried 30 times for 277 yards, raising his season total to 2,619 yards.
Upset-minded Cedar Hill (11-5) nosed in front, 24-21, three minutes into the fourth quarter on Damion Hobbs
' second touchdown pass of the day to Brandon Harris
, this one for 21 yards.
Trailing for the first time since the first quarter and with the season in the balance, Katy faced 4th-and-1 at its 44. Taylor from his deep set in the Katy ‘I' formation took a pitch from quarterback Kiley Huddleston
, turned the corner and behind great blocking was gone, 56 yards for the go-ahead score.
Taylor added an insurance touchdown in the final two minutes, breaking a 42-yard run along the left sideline. Defensive back Quinn Atwood
set it up with a diving interception of a Hobbs pass.
The state title for Katy is No. 7. Only two Texas schools have won more, Celina and Southlake Carroll. It is the first title for the Tigers since 2008.
"Some people questioned if our program was falling backward,'' said Katy coach Gary Joseph. "But 16 and 0, it's hard to top that. This season has to rank right up there at the top.''
Joseph revealed after the game that Huddleston was playing with a broken leg suffered in last week‘s win over Steele (Cibolo). The coach said a doctor cleared Huddleston and that the break was to a non weight-bearing bone.
"He [Huddleston] told me there was nothing that was going to keep him from going out there,'' Joseph said. Huddleston completed 3-of-5 passes for 44 yards.
Hobbs, an Arkansas State commit, rushed for 83 yards and threw for 200 in his final game for Cedar Hill. Hobbs' 24-yard touchdown run on fourth down early in the opening seconds of the fourth quarter brought the Longhorns to within five points, 21-16.
"We didn't come into the game thinking we couldn't play with them,'' said Joey McGuire, who guided Cedar Hill to a state title in 2006. "But I hope they wind up No. 1 not only in the state but in the nation. They are a great team.''Guyer (Denton) 48, Georgetown 37:
Junior quarterback Jerrod Heard
had a hand in all seven Wildcats touchdowns, rushing for five and passing for two more to lead Guyer (Denton, Texas)
(14-2) to the come-from-behind victory for the Class 4A Division I state title in the early game of Saturday's tripleheader.
Heard, a University of Texas commit, rushed for 143 yards and threw for 189 more, twice hitting a streaking Ellis Jefferson
(Arizona State pledge) in stride for touchdowns of 31 and 71 yards.Georgetown (Texas)
(15-1) rode the passing arm of senior Jake Hubenak
to a 16-point lead third-quarter lead. Hubenak threw for 316 yards and three touchdowns.
The Guyer defense twice stopped Georgetown cold on 4th-and-1 runs in the second half.
"We lost the momentum and we had a hard time getting it back,'' said Georgetown coach Jason Dean.
Guyer's go-ahead touchdown in the final two minutes of the third quarter was set up by a fumble recovery by Demontrie Taylor
at the Georgetown 5. A sack of Hubenak by Connor Allen
knocked the ball free.
The state championship is a first for Guyer, which started the season 0-2.
"We've been close the last five years,'' said Guyer coach John Walsh. "A couple of times, we've been good enough, but we didn't get it done. To get it done is refreshing.''