CLASS 6A DIVISION II
Area Playoff

Lufkin Panthers (9-2)

vs.

Richardson Pearce Mustangs (6-5)

2 p.m. Saturday
Tiger Stadium, Corsicana

Coaches

  • Lufkin: Todd Quick
  • Richardson Pearce: David Collins

Last week

Next week

  • Winner faces either San Marcos or Westfield, regional semifinals

Playmakers

Lufkin

  • WR Malik Jackson, Sr., 5-11, 170 (57 catches, 757 yards, 8 TDs; 11 carries, 109 yards, 2 TDs)
  • DL Carl Williams, Jr., 6-4, 306 (28 tackles, 3 tackles for loss, 3 sacks, 5 QB pressures, 2 forced fumbles)
  • WR Breylon Garcia, Jr., 6-4, 215 (20 catches, 329 yards, 3 TDs)
  • RB Isaiah Phillips, Sr., 5-9, 185 (199 carries, 1,398 yards, 20 TDs; 3 catches, 29 yards, 0 TDs)
  • DB Jeremiah Davis, Sr., 6-0, 180 (65 tackles, 1 for loss, 2 INTs, 8 PBUs, 4 forced fumbles; committed to Louisiana-Lafayette)
  • WR Ja'Lynn Polk, Soph., 6-2, 175 (29 catches, 539 yards, 4 TDs)
  • DB Savon Fields, Sr., 5-9, 168 (59 tackles, 3 for loss, 1 sack, 2 QB pressures, 4 PBUs, 2 fumble recoveries)
  • QB Kewone Thomas, Jr., 6-2, 190 (143 of 242, 1,992 yards, 18 TDs, 5 INTs; 106 carries, 309 yards, 7 TDs)

Richardson Pearce

  • QB Bo Brewer, Jr., 5-11, 190 (114-of-143, 1,628 yards, 12 TDs, 6 INTs; 67 carries, 307 yards, 6 TDs)
  • RB Dequan Landon, 5-7, 142 (158 carries, 1,250 yards, 12 TDs)
  • RB Bo Garner, Sr., 5-9, 160 (91 carries, 653 yards, 15 TDs)
  • WR De'Astone Barlow, Sr., 6-3, 205 (44 catches, 638 yards, 8 TDs)
  • DL Troy Tubby, Sr., 6-1, 220 (82 tackles, 12 for loss, 6.5 sacks, 5 forced fumbles)
  • Caleb Hart, Sr., 6-4, 210 (65 tackles, 5 for loss, 2 sacks)
  • LB Sam Harrison, Sr., 5-11, 215 (73 tacles, 6 for loss, 2 sacks)

Just the facts

  • Lufkin is averaging 36.6 points and 397.3 yards per game -- 210.3 rushing and 187.0 passing.
  • The Panthers are giving up just 83 yards per game on the ground and 3.0 yards per carry.
  • Lufkin running back Isaiah Phillips nearly has 1,400 yards rushing and is averaging 6.9 yards per carry.
  • Richardson Pearce running back Bo Garner is coming on at the right time --he has rushed for 411 yards and three touchdowns in the past two games.
  • The Mustangs are averaging 31.6 points and 386.9 yards per game --220.7 rushing and 166.2 passing.
  • Richardson Pearce is allowing 25.7 points per game.

Key matchup: Richardson Pearce rushing attack against the Lufkin defensive front. The Mustangs boast two capable running backs in Bo Garner and Dequan Landon. However, Landon has missed the past two games. If he is able to make a comeback in this one, it would be a huge plus for Richardson Pearce. Landon has rushed for 1,250 yards in just nine games.

Even if he can't, though, the Lufkin defense will have its hands full with Garner. He has posted consecutive 200-yard games and appears to be finding a rhythm at the right time.

The Panthers have been stout against the run this season. They are giving up only 83 yards per game on the ground and just three yards per carry. Carl Williams (three tackles for loss) leads the line. It will be a tall task for the Mustangs to get things moving against this group.

Whichever team wins this battle, may also win the war.

Lufkin WR Malik Jackson. (© Rob Graham, ETSN.fm)

Don't be surprised if: Malik Jackson and Ja'Lynn Polk see plenty of targets. They are the two top Panther receivers. This Lufkin offense has plenty of talent, and running back Isaiah Phillips shouldn't be ignored either.

But Jackson and Polk, teamed with Breylon Gracia, form a formidable receiving corps. Jackson leads the team with more than 700 yards, but Polk isn't far behind with 539. Kewone Thomas will have plenty of options to throw to as he has all season. If one isn't open, he simply has to look the other way.

Expect a big game from this group.