Class 2A Division I Region III
Final

New Boston Lions (12-0)
vs.
Daingerfield Tigers (10-3)

7:30 p.m. Friday
Sam Parker Field, Mount Pleasant

Coaches
New Boston: Rick Barker
Daingerfield: Aric Sardinea

Road To Regional Final

New Boston

  • Bi-district: bye
  • Area: def. Commerce, 40-7
  • Regional semifinal: def. Pottsboro, 20-14

 

Daingerfield

  • Bi-district: def. Eustace, 58-0
  • Area: def. Callisburg, 32-21
  • Regional semifinal: def. Winnsboro, 47-14

 

Next week: Winner plays Wall (11-1) or Eastland (10-2) in a 2A Division I state semifinal.

 

Playmakers

New Boston

  • RB Damien Haskins, Sr., 5-10, 210 (255 carries, 3,061 yards, 51 TDs; committed to Oregon State)
  • DL Dedric Dragoo
  • WR/DB Jawaun Johnson (1 TD catch; 5 INTs)
  • QB Aaron Conkleton (30 of 60, 627 yards, 3 TDs, 3 INTs; 32 carries, 142 yards, 2 TDs)
  • TE Tyjae Clark (13 catches, 277 yards, 1 TD)
  • ATH Jeff Gladney (20 carries, 266 yards, 4 TDs)
  • RB Jimmie Johnson (40 carries, 229 yards, 4 TDs)

 

Daingerfield

  • QB Keris Alexander, Jr. (122 of 213, 1,864 yards, 17 TDs, 7 INTs; 2 rush TDs)
  • ATH Edwin Mims, Sr. (30 of 70, 531 yards, 4 TDs, 4 INTs; 107 carries, 692 yards, 13 TDs; 51 catches, 853 yards, 8 TDs)
  • OL/DL Jacolby Simpson, Sr. (74 tackles, 9 for loss, 1 sack, 1 forced fumble)
  • LB Calvin Bryant, Sr. (148 tackles, 20 for loss, 3 sacks, 2 INTs, 2 forced fumbles)
  • WR/DB Shawn Hooks, Sr. (50 catches, 782 yards, 8 TDs; 20 carries, 212 yards, 4 TDs; 48 tackles, 3 INTs, 7 forced fumbles)
  • RB Cordarius Anderson (116 carries, 919 yards, 14 TDs)
  • RB Ramius Wallace, Jr. (87 carries, 538 yards, 4 TDs)

 

Just the facts

  • New Boston averages 42.6 points per game and allows 13.2.
  • Daingerfield averages 35.7 points per game and allows 18.1.
  • New Boston averages 407.3 total yards per game (355.1 rushing, 52.3 passing).
  • Daingerfield averages 377.5 total yards per game (193.3 rushing,184.2 passing).
  • New Boston's Damien Haskins has rushed for at least 133 yards every game this season.
  • New Boston won the first meeting this season between these teams 38-37 at home Oct. 5.
  • Daingerfield had a game-winning touchdown negated by penalty in the closing seconds of the Oct. 5 meeting.
  • A Daingerfield win puts the Tigers in their fourth state semifinal in five years.
  • This is the fifth consecutive regional final for Daingerfield.

 

 

New Boston RB Damien Haskins (Courtesy)

Key matchup: Daingerfield's defensive front vs. New Boston's running game. There's no other way to describe Damien Haskins' senior season than unbelievable. Haskins has been the most dynamic offensive player in East Texas, averaging 255.1 rushing yards and 4.3 touchdowns per game. Haskins gains 12.0 yards per carry, and that's while averaging 21.3 totes per contest. That's just insane. Daingerfield had no answer for Haskins when the teams met two months ago. Haskins ran for almost 400 yards to lead the Lions to a thrilling 38-37 victory in what turned out to be the District 9-2A Division I championship game. It's unreasonable to ask the Tigers to stop Haskins. Perhaps Daingerfield's best defense is its offense. The Tigers can run the ball themselves, and sustaining drives may be the best way to keep Haskins off the field and, in turn, the scoreboard. But, when New Boston's offense is off the field, Jacolby Simpson, Calvin Bryant, and the Daingerfield defense need to at least make it more difficult for Haskins than it was Oct. 5 in New Boston.

 

Don't be surprised if: The rematch is just as good as the first meeting. Damien Haskins vs. Daingerfield's bevy of athletes is enough to have any fan excited about this one, much less the history between the two teams. Daingerfield has the playoff pedigree, but New Boston may have the playmaker. The Tigers are aiming for their fourth state championship run in five seasons. Can Haskins and the Lions stop their 9-2A D-I brethren from accomplishing that goal? They've already beaten them once this season, but you know what they say; it's hard to beat a good team twice. Friday night in Mount Pleasant should be a treat for Northeast Texas.