Run-Heavy Offensive Attacks Collide When Hughes Springs Meets Unbeaten Corrigan-Camden
Class 2A Division II Region III
Hughes Springs Mustangs (10-1)
Corrigan-Camden Bulldogs (11-0)
7:30 p.m. Friday
Bulldog Stadium, Carthage
- Hughes Springs: Chris Edwards
- Corrigan-Camden: Seven Armstrong
- Hughes Springs: won 46-20 vs. Frankston
- Corrigan-Camden: won 60-14 vs. Buffalo
- Winner plays Garrison or Centerville in a 2A Division II regional semifinal
- RB Fred Hopkins, Jr., 5-10, 160 (93 carries, 1,150 yards, 17 TDs; 4 catches, 111 yards, 1 TD)
- QB Michael Martinez, Sr., 5-9, 185 (15 of 30, 224 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT; 137 carries, 950 yards, 11 TDs)
- RB Chris Royal, Sr., 5-10, 185 (104 carries, 669 yards, 13 TDs)
- RB/LB Kane Sampson, Sr. (39 carries, 455 yards, 4 TDs; 68 tackles, 1 sack, 6 QB pressures, 1 forced fumble, 3 recoveries, 6 INTs, 2 pass break-ups)
- WR Austin Calcote, Sr. (9 catches, 207 yards, 1 TD)
- OL/DL Kyre Lewis, Sr., 6-3, 305 (76 tackles, 4 for loss, 1 sack, 5 QB pressures)
- TE/LB Hunter Smith, Jr. (9 catches, 156 yards, 1 TD; 39 tackles, 4 for loss, 2 sacks, 4 QB pressures, 2 fumble recoveries, 4 INTs, 5 pass break-ups)
- OL/DL Thomas Wallace, Sr. (60 tackles, 5 for loss, 2 sacks, 4 QB pressures, 3 forced fumbles)
- RB/DB Keegan Mitchell, Jr., 5-6, 170 (149 carries, 2,054 yards, 25 TDs; 3 catches, 34 yards, 2 TDs
- RB Malyk Johnson, Soph., 5-10, 185 (111 carries, 1,228 yards, 18 TDs)
- QB Haden Armstrong, Sr. (8 of 22, 178 yards, 3 TDs, 0 INTs; 75 carries, 419 yards, 7 TDs)
- FB/LB Carlos Inguanzo, Sr., 5-9, 220 (98 carries, 554 yards, 9 TDs)
- FB/LB Addison Kirkland, Sr., 5-11, 210 (67 carries, 329 yards, 10 TDs)
- TE/LB Kade Moore, Sr.
- WR/DB Lakendrick Moore, Soph. (2 catches, 68 yards, 1 TD)
- DL Calvin Burks, Sr.
Just the facts
- Hughes Springs is in the playoffs for the sixth time in seven seasons under head coach Chris Edwards.
- The Mustangs are 55-25 since Edwards' arrival prior to the 2007 season.
- Hughes Springs has run 534 plays from scrimmage, 87 percent of which are running plays.
- The Mustangs are averaging 44.4 points and 402.5 yards per game (345.5 rushing).
- Hughes Springs was 3-1 in games against teams with a winning record in 2013. The average score of those games was 36-23 in favor of Hughes Springs.
- Corrigan-Camden has made the postseason every year since 1997, and 11 consecutive years under head coach Seven Armstrong.
- The Bulldogs' 11 wins are their most since the 2006 team finished 12-2.
- Corrigan-Camden has run 556 plays from scrimmage, 96 percent of which are running plays.
- The Bulldogs are averaging 50.1 points and 456.6 yards per game (437.3 rushing).
- Corrigan-Camden has defeated two teams -- Deweyville and Groveton -- with winning records this season, and is outscoring the opposition by an average of 31 points per game.
Key matchup: Each team's running game vs. opposing defense. If you're a fan of old-school football, Friday night's matchup between Hughes Springs and Corrigan-Camden is right up your alley. With the spread offense having taken over the state, both the Mustangs and Bulldogs have remained true to their roots and are among the top two running teams in the area. Hughes Springs averages six passing attempts per game, while Corrigan-Camden is even more run-heavy. The Bulldogs only put it in the air an average of two times per game. So the key to Friday's game is obvious: the team with the best rushing attack stands a good chance to continue their playoff journey.
Hughes Springs will feature four ball carriers that have at least 455 rushing yards on the season, led by the duo of leading rusher Fred Hopkins and last season's top ground gainer Michael Martinez. Between them, they have amassed 2,100 yards and scored 28 of the team's 53 rushing touchdowns. But those aren't the only backs that see significant action. Chris Royal is second on the team in carries and touchdowns and third on the team in rushing, while Kane Sampson has scored four touchdowns on the year with an average of 11.2 yards per attempt.
Corrigan-Camden is similarly balanced with its running game. Keegan Mitchell eclipsed the 2,000-yard mark in last week's bi-district win over Buffalo, and enters Friday averaging 13.7 yards per carry with 25 touchdowns. Malyk Johnson is also a force in the backfield, having eclipsed 1,200 yards with 18 touchdowns and an 11.0 yards-per-carry average. The Bulldogs have three other main options out of the backfield in Carlos Inguanzo, Haden Armstrong and Addison Kirkland, who have combined for 1,395 yards and 19 touchdowns. As a team, Corrigan-Camden has totaled 71 rushing touchdowns while averaging nine yards per attempt.
Don't be surprised if: This game is completed in less than two hours. Fewer passing attempts mean fewer incompletions, which results in fewer clock-stoppages. The only way this game drags on is if one of the teams falls behind by a substantial amount early and resorts to passing in an effort to catch up. But with how evenly matched Hughes Springs and Corrigan-Camden appear to be, don't expect a runaway for either side. If the game is close, that could favor Hughes Springs, which may have played a little bit more challenging schedule than its counterpart. Corrigan-Camden has outscored its last six opponents by a cumulative score of 352-104, while Hughes Springs faced unbeaten Waskom in the regular-season finale for the District 9-2A D-II championship. With the stakes raised again, the Mustangs have the more recent experience in big games, which could make a difference.