Jake Parker + Patrick Mahomes Power Whitehouse Passing Attack in Scrimmage vs. Mount Pleasant
WHITEHOUSE -- What a difference a week and a full roster make.
Seven days after Gilmer shut down a shorthanded Whitehouse team, the Wildcats bounced back with all hands on deck in an impressive scrimmage performance against Mount Pleasant on Friday at Wildcat Stadium.
Whitehouse's first-team offense scored two times to Mount Pleasant's one during 20 controlled scrimmage plays, then beat the Tigers 28-12 in a live half that saw Texas Tech-committed quarterback Patrick Mahomes hit senior receiver Jake Parker three times for touchdowns. Parker played last week, but several offensive starters didn't, including Mahomes, who threw for 3,800-plus yards as a junior.
"It's just a totally different thing with Pat out here. He brings a lot to the offense," said Parker, who led Whitehouse in 2012 with 69 receptions. "Having all of our linemen made a big difference. It gave us a lot more time to throw the ball and run our routes."
That time allowed Mahomes to find Parker for touchdowns of 19, 43, and 24 yards during the live half after Parker took a tunnel screen 52 yards for a score during the controlled portion. Parker's 43-yarder was a highlight-reel play as he caught the ball over the middle, cut left three times while directing blockers before diving in the left front corner of the end zone for a 21-6 lead late in the first live quarter.
"I saw I had a couple of blockers going to my left and I juked a guy and got some blocks and dove into the end zone," said Parker, who finished the night with a total of five receptions for 165 yards and four touchdowns.
Mahomes, who was 7-for-10 with 186 yards, two touchdowns, and one interception during the controlled portion, completed 9 of 15 live-half passes for 162 yards and the three touchdowns to Parker. In all, Mahomes was 16 of 25 for 348 yards, five touchdowns, and one pick.
Mahomes' other touchdown went to running back Vincent Dunning, who turned a controlled-portion dumpoff underneath into a 64-yard touchdown. Dunning bounced outside down the visitor sideline before evading two defenders inside the 10-yard line for the touchdown. He ran well all night, totaling nine carries for 42 yards, including a one-yard, live-quarter touchdown run.
Elusive senior running back Tarrence Taylor was Mount Pleasant's best big-play option Friday night. He scored on a 75-yard touchdown run during the controlled portion and a 70-yard touchdown run in the live half. The 5-foot-10, 155-pounder speedster, who had more than 1,000 yards of total offense as a junior, carried six times total for 167 yards and the two scores.
Mount Pleasant senior receiver and recent Baylor pledge K.D. Cannon had his moments, especially in the controlled portion, when he beat his defender to haul in a 41-yard touchdown strike from Cullen Grubbs, who completed 7 of 9 controlled scrimmage passes for 91 yards, the touchdown to Cannon, and one interception. Cannon caught four passes for 63 yards in that part of the scrimmage and finished with seven catches for 78 yards and the aforementioned touchdown.
Defensively, Mount Pleasant's top cover corner, Ladarius Craddock, made a nice play to pick off a would-be touchdown throw during the controlled portion. He broke on a ball at the goal line for an interception, something he specialized in as a junior when he finished among East Texas' leaders with seven interceptions.
Whitehouse senior linebackers Reggie Long, Chris Reese, and Joseph Klein each had an interception. Reese's came in the controlled portion, while Long and Klein got theirs in the live half.
Whitehouse opens the 2013 season at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Hallsville. Mount Pleasant hosts Paris at the same time.
First-year Whitehouse head coach Adam Cook said the second scrimmage performance is encouraging after last week's disappointing outing at Gilmer.
"Anytime you can come out and perform better it's gonna give you momentum going into the next week," Cook said. "Overall we were excited with the way we played. That momentum really started Monday in practice, and we had probably our best practice Wednesday and we progressed throughout the week. ... I think the biggest thing our guys will be doing next week is getting into the routine of the season."