[By Jeff Henderson, Special to ETSN.fm]

HALLSVILLE -- Hallsville's ground game powered the Bobcats to a 19-7 victory against Texas High and the Tigers' tough defense in Friday's District 14-4A finale.

Both teams had already clinched playoff berths, but the win allowed Hallsville to shake off a two-game losing to high-octane offenses from Sulphur Springs and Mt. Pleasant. Hallsville (7-3, 3-2) plays undefeated Lucas Lovejoy in a Class 4A Division II Region II bi-district playoff at 7:30 p.m. Friday in Forney. Texas High (3-6, 2-2) faces Sherman at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Paris' Wildcat Stadium.

Hallsville's Thaddeus Fagan ran 25 times for 224 yards and touchdowns as Hallsville (7-3, 3-2) outgained Texas High 37-257. Quarterback Austin Toney completed 9 of 17 passes for 90 yards, while Texas High's Dakota Hunter went 15-for-31 for 155 yards and a score. Tiger tailback Treveon Walker put up 96 yards on 25 carries.

Fagan sealed Hallsville's win with a 77-yard, fourth-quarter touchdown run for a 19-7 advantage. Hallsville got a huge defensive play from Cayden Ferrill in the fourth quarter when he forced a fumble inside his own 5-yard line to thwart a potential go-ahead touchdown drive for Texas High.

Paden Brown gave Hallsville a 3-0 lead with a second-quarter field goal. Brown added another field goal right before halftime on the heels of Michael Wilbur's fumble recovery off a Santos Estrada hit to give the Bobcats a 6-0 lead at intermission.

Fagan scored on a 44-yard touchdown run for a 13-0 lead early in the third quarter, but Texas High concluded a nine-play touchdown drive on Hunter's 23-yard play-action pass touchdown pass to Ben Adams to cut Hallsville's lead to six points. Texas High kept the drive alive with a fake punt.

On the fourth quarter's second play, Ferrill sacked Hunter on a big hit that forced a fumble on a fourth-and-goal play from the Bobcat 4-yard line. Wilbur got his second fumble recovery of the game to preserve Hallsville's 13-7 advantage.

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