Newton’s State Championship Win a Total Team Effort
ARLINGTON — There were more than just a few contributors to Newton’s first state championship since 2005.
The usual suspects all showed up in the Eagles' 40-16 rout of Newton in the Class 3A Division II title game Thursday night at AT&T Stadium.
Star running back Darwin Barlow scored the game’s first touchdown, and two-way standout Tamauzia Brown set it up with his 12th interception of the year, and later added a long scoring run.
But quarterback Josh Foster passed for a season-high 217 yards with three touchdowns. One went to LaKendrick Adams, who had one reception coming into the game.
The other two belonged to senior receiver Noah Williams, who was voted the game’s Offensive Most Valuable Player.
It was a total team effort.
“I’m a team player, and as long as we win, I’m happy,” said Brown, who finished with 118 yards and a touchdown rushing but was held without a catch for the first time this season. “It’s my team, love them to death. I love all my coaches.”
Barlow, a 2,000-yard rusher who has carried the team offensively all season, led the way with 137 yards on 18 carries.
He will finish his junior year with 2,246 yards and 38 touchdowns.
“The main thing was just to say focused,” Barlow said. “We have athletes all over the field. Everybody can make plays on the ball, and it just showed tonight.”
Williams was the breakout performer on the biggest stage.
He was caught five of Foster’s six completions and was responsible for 143 of his quarterback’s passing yards.
His 10-yard scoring reception gave Newton a 14-7 lead early in the second quarter, and his 66-yard touchdown catch on the final play of the third quarter gave his team the lead for good, 20-16.
“Noah is a good athlete and we knew the (player) they had on him couldn’t hold Noah one on one,” Foster said. “I was just throwing it up and giving him a chance.”
After that, Newton put it into cruise control with three fourth-quarter touchdowns.
Adams caught a pass down the seam and streaked 74 yards into the end zone to put Newton up, 27-16. Brown took an end-around down the far sideline 75 yards for a touchdown, and Foster’s 8-yard scoring run with 2:41 remaining put the capper on a dominant 15-0 campaign.
"Our offense, the guy calling the plays is very good," said Newton head coach W.T. Johnston. "Greg Neece is very good. He came up with some stuff, but I’m telling ‘ya, we got great players. Newton’s got good coaches and that’s the difference.”
Newton outscored its opponents, 783-144, on the season.
The scary thing: Newton is losing just four senior starters to graduation.
Barlow, Brown, Foster, and a slew of other impact performers return in 2018.
“We’re not losing many players this year,” Foster said. “We can come back and win it again next year.”