Malakoff Athlete Tyler Russell Wins ETSN.fm + Dairy Queen Defensive Player Of The Week
There will be entirely new blood in the Class 3A Division I state championship game for the first time in a long time.
Malakoff prevented Cameron Yoe from reaching a fifth consecutive title game and perhaps a fourth win in the span with a 37-34 overtime victory Friday at Waco ISD Stadium. It took four takeaways and a turnover on downs in extra time to slay the Yoe giant.
All-around senior athlete Tyler Russell made two of those turnovers happen. He's the ETSN.fm + Dairy Queen Defensive Player of the Week, but he also made a solid case for the similarly named offensive award that ultimately went to Gilmer quarterback Aaron "Poppy" Brown.
Not only did Russell derail two Yoe drives with interceptions as a defensive back, he scored twice at receiver and caught the game-tying two-point conversion to ultimately force overtime with five minutes left in the game. That's what we like to call a 29-point swing.
Russell's first interception offset a Malakoff fumble in the first quarter of a 7-7 game. He pulled down a Yoe pass to the end zone and returned it to the 38-yard line.
Q.T. Barker ran in a score the next play to put the Tigers back in the lead.
Russell's second interception simply kept Yoe off the board and dragged the two teams closer to overtime.
Malakoff will face Yoakum at the University of Texas' 100,119-seat Darrel K. Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium this Friday in the 3A Division I state semifinal round. The undefeated Tigers have won four more games than Yoakum this season.
An East Texas state championship game scenario is looming large. Mineola will be playing in the classification's other semifinal game.
ETSN.fm/Dairy Queen Defensive Players of the Week
- Week 15 (Dec. 2-Dec. 4) -- Tyler Russell, DB, Malakoff
- Week 14 (Nov. 24-Nov. 26) -- Corbin Foster, LB, Newton
- Week 13 (Nov. 17-Nov. 19) -- Cody Foshee, DB, Tenaha
- Week 12 (Nov. 10-Nov. 12) -- Tanner Murphy, LB, Jefferson
- Week 11 (Nov. 3-Nov. 5) -- Jeremy Kelly, LB, Gilmer
- Week 10 (Oct. 27-Oct. 29) -- Cooper Bledsoe, DB, Van
- Week 9 (Oct. 20-Oct. 22) -- Sloan Rodberg, LB, Wills Point
- Week 8 (Oct. 13-Oct. 15) -- Paul Bonamy, DB, Pine Tree
- Week 7 (Oct. 6-Oct. 8) -- Jeremiah Milton, ATH, Tyler Bishop Gorman
- Week 6 (Sept. 29-Oct. 1) -- Traveion Webster, DB, Longview
- Week 5 (Sept. 22-24) -- Alex Thlang, LB, Elkhart
- Week 4 (Sept. 15-Sept. 17) -- Brandon Cook, DB, White Oak
- Week 3 (Sept. 8-Sept. 10) -- Dekalen Goodson, DL, John Tyler
- Week 2 (Sept. 1-Sept. 3) -- Taylor Smith, DB, Jefferson
- Week 1 (Aug. 25-Aug. 27) -- Keylon Johnson, DE, Waskom