Newton Faces Rogers For Class 3A D-II, Region III Title
Class 3A Division II
Region III Championship
Newton Eagles (10-3)
Rogers Eagles (11-2)
7:30 p.m. Friday
Woodforest Bank Stadium, Shenandoah
- Newton: W.T. Johnston
- Rogers: Darren Anderson
Road to regional final
- Bi-district: def. New Waverly, 46-6
- Area: def. Dublin, 56-14
- Regional semifinal: def. Franklin 49-21
- Bi-district: def. Blooming Grove, 35-13
- Area: def. Corrigan-Camden, 40-14
- Regional semifinal: def. Crockett, 51-28
- Winner plays Blanco-Odem winner, state semifinals
- QB/DB Roney Elam, Sr., 6-3, 170 (25 of 68, 544 yards, 2 TDs, 6 INTs, 74 carries, 367 yards, 8 TDs; 91 tackles, 4 INTs, 3 forced fumbles, 3 recoveries, 5 blocked kicks; committed to Texas A&M )
- RB/DB Calum Foster, Sr., 5-11, 175 (131 carries, 1,483 yards, 19 TDs, 6 catches, 144 yards; 66 tackles, 2 INTs)
- OL Brent Simmons, Sr., 6-3, 287
- RB Jace Thomas, Sr., 5-8, 175 (170 carries, 1,501 yards, 19 TDs, 6 catches, 116 yards)
- LB Raylin Davis, Sr., 5-8, 170 (81 tackles, 2 sacks, 1 INT, 1 fumble recovery)
- OL/DL Dave Lewis, Sr., 6-0, 265 (67 tackles, 5 sacks)
- FB/S Brady Malovets, Sr.
- TE/DE Cody Peters, Sr., 6-2, 215
- OL/DL Brandon Bruce, Sr., 6-2, 215
Just the facts
- Newton has surpassed last year's regional semifinal finish and is in the regional championship game for the second time in three seasons.
- Rogers has made the playoffs every year since 2009, but it has not advanced this far in that span. It fell a point short of making it to the fourth round against state power Refugio last year.
- Newton put up a season-worst 49 points on Franklin last week. Franklin had shut out four straight district opponents in the month of October.
- Friday's game marks the third straight for Rogers against a District 11-3A Division II opponent. It defeated Corrigan-Camden and Crockett in back-to-back weeks.
- Newton and Rogers share Dublin as a third common opponent. Dublin belongs to Rogers' District 10-3A Division II.
- Rogers beat the three teams by a combined score of 122-56. Newton won, 155-58.
- Newton's margin of victory against the three common opponents was 97 points. Rogers' was 66 points.
- Both teams won district championships.
- Newton will travel 134 miles to Shenandoah, which is just north of the Greater Houston Area. Rogers will travel 145 miles for its location just southeast of Temple.
Key matchup: Rogers offense versus Newton's defense. Newton has been doing just fine offensively in recent games, although they'll be tested by Rogers which has averaged 15.2 points per night through 13 games. The bigger issue is Rogers' running game and how it stacks up against Newton's solid defensive unit.
Fullback Brady Malovets' exact size is a mystery. It's not listed on any Rogers roster, but he is a big player with multiple 300-yard rushing games under his belt. The offense as a whole averages a good 28.5 points per game, and it has exceeded that number in each of its three playoff games.
Newton might just have the answer.
Linebacker Tanner Holmes, the current ETSN.fm/Dairy Queen Defensive Player of the Week, recorded six tackles for loss and 17 total takedowns in last week's win against Franklin. Dave Lewis has held his own on the defensive line with 67 tackles and five sacks this season. Furthermore, Texas A&M commitment Roney Elam headlines an extremely athletic secondary which mostly doubles as Newton's offensive backfield.
Aside from Franklin, Newton got the best of a very successful Corrigan-Camden backfield on the way to a 44-26 win in district play. However, Rogers held the same group to 14 points in a 40-14 win four weeks later.
Don't be surprised if: Friday's game is relatively low scoring. Newton is battling an outstanding defensive group, and it has a pretty good unit of its own which is averaging 16.8 points against per game.
Hang on because. Whichever team has the ball last very well could determine the outcome of the game.