Kade Clayton Sparks Tyler Grace to 56-28 Rout of Mineola
MINEOLA -- It was the Kade Clayton show Friday night. The junior wide receiver scored four touchdowns to propel the Tyler Grace Cougars over the Mineola Yellowjackets, 56-28.
Clayton had eight catches for 121 yards and a touchdown, rushed for two scores and returned a kickoff 85 yards for another. He finished with 217 all-purpose yards.
"He works so hard for us in practice," Grace coach Mike Maddox said. "He's quite a self motivator. He's got a vision for his life. He wants to do everything he can to have a chance at playing college football. He's learning more and more to take a leadership role."
Tyler Grace (2-0) quarterback Blake White also joined in on the fun with his own spectacular performance. The senior threw for 315 yards, two touchdowns and also rushed for 94 yards and a touchdown.
The scoring started at the 6:35 mark of the first quarter, when White connected with wideout Statler Lewis on a 7-yard strike to make it 7-0.
On the second play of the second quarter, Cougars sophomore Adam Graham punched it in from 6 yards away, quickly making it a 14-0 game. Graham finished with five carries for 21 yards and two touchdowns.
After a Yellowjackets fumble, White ran a option keeper in for a 19-yard touchdown and a 21-0 lead with 10:25 remaining in the first half.
Mineola (1-1) quickly recovered, putting together a five-play drive that ended with quarterback Tyler Hudson hitting Casey Galbreath for a 43-yard touchdown toss and a Brandon Melo two-point conversion, making it 21-8.
After three punts and a interception, Clayton scored on a 2-yard run with 48 seconds left in the half, giving Grace a 28-8 lead.
Four plays later, Mineola running back Dac Shaw scored on an 11-yard run with 14 seconds remaining in the half to make it a 28-15 margin. The TCU bound Shaw finshed with 15 carries for 110 yards and a score, while contributing a tackle for loss, a forced fumble and a sack on defense.
The Mineola crowd was hoping for momentum going into halftime, but were let down when Clayton returned the ensuing kickoff 85 yards for a touchdown, giving Grace a 35-15 lead.
"We wanted to play fast," Maddox said. "We knew Mineola's strength was inside, so we did everything we could to go sideline to sideline."
It didn't take long for Grace to put more points on the board, as it started the second half with a four-play drive ending in a Graham 10-yard scamper at the 11:08 mark to go up 42-15.
After a Mineola seven-play drive ended in a fumble, White connected with Clayton for 34-yard touchdown and a 49-15 lead midway through the third quarter.
The Yellowjackets never quit, however. Senior cornerback Rico Rojas returned a White interception 56 yards to paydirt and cut the lead to 49-22.
Mineola quarterback Tyler Hudson finished with 3-of-9 for 85 yards and two interceptions.
With the first play of the fourth quarter, Clayton finshed off his fantastic night with an 8-yard rushing touchdown that pushed Grace's lead to 56-22.
"We shot ourselves in the foot so much in the first half by fumbling the football," Mineola coach Joe Drennon said. "We've been here before. This is the reason I've got (Grace) on our schedule. Mike (Maddox) does a great job with those guys. It's only going to make us a better football team."
A Devon Foster 7-yard touchdown tote finished the night's scoring for Mineola. He gathered 81 yards rushing on eight carries for the Yellowjackets.
Mineola is at home next Friday for Winnsboro, while Tyler Grace plays host to Kemp.