HUMBLE -- After combining for nine points in the game's first 40 minutes, Jasper and West Orange-Stark scored 25 points in the final eight minutes in a wild finish to Friday's Class 3A Division I Region III semifinal at Turner Stadium.

The lead changed four times in the final 7:39 as West Orange-Stark's 13-yard touchdown strike from Dillon Sterling-Cole to Will Johnson with 1:28 remaining lifted the Mustangs to an 18-16 victory to propel them to the 3A D-I Region III title game.

Jasper returned the ensuing kickoff to its own 43-yard line, but couldn't do anything with the good field position and turned over the ball on downs near midfield to secure the Mustangs' wins.

West Orange-Stark (11-1) faces Carthage (12-1) at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Beaumont ISD Stadium in the regional championship clash.

Sterling-Cole completed 14 of 21 passes for 196 yards, two touchdowns, and two interceptions, while rushing 17 times for 61 yards. Johnson led West Orange-Stark with 73 yards on four receptions, while Dwain Boullard caught three passes for 68 yards. Chris James ran 10 times for 43 yards and caught three passes for 15 yards, including a six-yard touchdown from Sterling-Cole that gave the Mustangs a 12-10 lead with 4:20 left in the game.

As always, Jasper (8-4) rode Terrance "Tiki" Cuney on offense. He ran 25 times for 219 yards and two touchdowns. Cuney's 17-yard score with 7:39 remaining gave Jasper its first lead, 10-6, and his 12-yard run with 2:43 remaining pushed the Bulldogs back ahead 16-12 before West Orange-Stark drove yet again for the game-winning score.

Jasper quarterback Steven Walker completed 7 of 17 passes for 134 yards and two interceptions. Shawn Jones had four receptions for a game-high 104 yards.

Cuney's 17-yard touchdown run was the game's first offensive touchdown. West Orange-Stark led 6-3 through the third quarter on the strength of Josh Tims' late first-quarter 58-yard fumble return for a touchdown. Jasper's Marco Lopez kicked a 30-yard field goal five minutes into the second quarter to cut the Mustangs' lead to 6-3, which held until Cuney's first of two touchdowns.

After holding West Orange-Stark's offense scoreless for the game's first 43 minutes, Jasper's defense couldn't get a stop to seal the victory. West Orange-Stark answered the Cuney run with a drive capped by the six-yard Sterling-Cole-to-James strike to regain the lead, 12-10, but Jasper responded with a march that Cuney punctuated with his second touchdown for a 16-12 edge.

Seventy-five seconds later, Sterling-Cole found Johnson from 13 yards for the game-winning score, 18-16.

-- Stats courtesy the Beaumont Enterprise


Class 3A Division I Region III

West Orange-Stark 18, Jasper 16

Turner Stadium, Humble

Jasper -- 0 3 0 13 -- 16
WO-S -- 6 0 0 12 -- 18

First Quarter
WO-S -- Josh Tims 58 fumble return (kick failed) -- 3:05
Second Quarter
JAS -- Mario Lopez 30 field goal -- 7:01
Fourth Quarter
JAS -- Terrance Cuney 17 run (Lopez kick) -- 7:39
WO-S -- Chris James 6 pass from Dillon Sterling-Cole (kick failed) -- 4:20
JAS -- Terrance Cuney 12-yard run (Terrance Cuney run failed) -- 2:43
WO-S -- Will Johnson 13-yard pass from Dillon Sterling-Cole (pass failed) -- 1:28

                            JAS              WO-S
First downs            17                   18
Total yards            393                  351
Rushes-Yards     38-259            39-155
Pass yards            134                  196
Comp.-Att.-Int.     7-17-2            14-21-0
Punts-Avg.           4-34.8              4-37.0
Fumbles-Lost          2-2                  2-0
Penalties-Yards      5-45                5-47