Two All-East Texas State Championship Games Possible for AT&T Stadium in Arlington
Separated by less than 30 miles of Highway 64, Chapel Hill and Henderson did battle in front of 22,000-plus at Cowboys Stadium more than two hours west in the 2010 Class 3A Division I state championship game.
It was an all-East Texas showdown for the ultimate crown many won't forget, and we could see a similar situation in 2013 -- not one, but two of 'em.
This weekend's state semifinal round leaves the possibility of two all-East Texas football state championship games, again in 3A Division I and the other in 2A Division I.
In 3A Division I, No. 2 Kilgore will meet the winner between Stephenville and Lubbock Cooper, which play Monday night after bad weather postponed the game over the weekend. If Stephenville wins, that will mean the second consecutive meeting in the semifinals between the Bulldogs and Yellow Jackets, with Kilgore looking to avenge 2012's loss.
Kilgore took down "District of Doom" rival Chapel Hill, 59-19, last Friday night for the Region II championship.
On the other side of 3A Division I, Carthage meets LaGrange at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Mansfield's Newsom Field. The Bulldogs used clutch plays and a huge fourth-quarter drive to get past West Orange-Stark, 28-14, last Friday night.
Less than 50 miles separates Kilgore and Carthage in East Texas, but if both win, we're looking at an all-East Texas and an all-Bulldog battle for the 3A Division I state championship, which is noon Friday, Dec. 20, at AT&T Stadium.
We could see the same in Class 2A Division I, with the possibility of New Boston and White Oak facing off in the state championship at 5 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 19, at AT&T Stadium.
New Boston dominated district rival Daingerfield, 41-14, last Saturday to avenge not only a regular season loss to the Tigers, but also a defeat in the same playoff scenario last season, in which Daingerfield reached the state title game.
White Oak is one of our area's finer stories of 2013. The Roughnecks moved to 13-1 after shutting out then-unbeaten Franklin, 31-0, last Friday night to reach the semifinals for the first time in 43 years. The win came a week after White Oak shocked No. 2-ranked and unbeaten Newton in the regional semifinals.
New Boston plays Wall (14-0) at 5 p.m. Saturday from Midway High School's Panther Stadium in Waco in the semifinal round. White Oak faces defending state champ Cameron Yoe (13-1) at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Allen's $54 million Eagle Stadium.
Waskom (14-0) is on a roll in the 2A Division II playoffs, coming off a 24-22 win over then-unbeaten Corrigan-Camden last Friday night. The Wildcats are a win away from the title game, but first must go through perennial power Refugio (13-1) at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at Houston's Reliant Stadium.
Tenaha is a win away from returning to the Class A Division II title game. The Tigers are coming off a 24-7 win over Bremond and will face Falls City at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Waco ISD Stadium.
2013 State Semifinal Playoff Matchups
Class 3A Division I
Kilgore (14-0) vs. Stephenville (12-1), 2 p.m. Saturday, Tiger Stadium, Corsicana
Carthage (13-1) vs. La Grange (13-0), 7:30 p.m. Friday, Newsom Field, Mansfield
Class 2A Division I
New Boston (13-1) vs. Wall (14-0), 6 p.m. Saturday, Panther Stadium, Waco
White Oak (13-1) vs. Cameron Yoe (13-1), 7:30 p.m. Friday, Eagle Stadium, Allen
Class 2A Division II
Waskom (14-0) vs. Refugio (13-1), 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Reliant Stadium, Houston
Class 1A Division II
Tenaha (11-1) vs. Falls City (13-0), 7:30 p.m. Friday, Waco ISD Stadium