PREVIEW: John Tyler Looks to Continue Run Against Lancaster
CLASS 5A DIVISION I
Region II Area Playoff
John Tyler Lions (8-2)
Lancaster Tigers (7-3)
2 p.m. Saturday
Mesquite Memorial Stadium, Mesquite
- John Tyler: Ricklan Holmes
- Lancaster: Chris Gilbert
- John Tyler: def. Tomball, 43-17
- Lancaster: def. Wakeland, 49-28
- Winner vs. Lufkin or Frisco Lone Star, 5A Division I regional semifinal
Players to watch
- WR Ke'Andre Street, Sr., 6-2, 200 (28 catches, 801 yards, 10 TDs; committed to Houston)
- RB Roderick Hawkins, Sr., 5-8, 190 (122 carries, 1,160 yards, 9 TDs; 11 catches, 180 yards, 1 TDs)
- RB/CB Cameron Grant, Sr., 5-10, 185 (64 carries, 507 yards, 8 TDs; 33 tackles, 2 for loss, 2 INTs, 13 PBUs, 1 forced fumble)
- OL Chance Billington, Sr., 6-4, 275 (committed to Louisiana-Monroe)
- QB Devlen Woods, Sr., 5-8, 170 (88-of-143, 1,844 yards, 21 TDs, 4 INTs; 55 carries, 323 yards, 3 TDs)
- RB Ka'Darian Asbell, Sr., 5-10, 210 (28 carries, 316 yards, 3 TDs)
- DE Christian Hartsfield, Sr., 5-10, 221 (58 tackles, 13 for loss, 7 sacks, 1 blocked punt)
- DT Ja'Bralen Yarber, Sr., 6-1, 280 (47 tackles, 7 for loss, 2 sacks, 13 QB pressures; committed to Northwestern State)
- LB Jarrius Lane, 5-11, 210 (77 tackles, 9.5 for loss, 6.5 sacks)
- ATH Tre Bradford, Jr. (1,102 yards rushing, 14 TDs)
- ATH DQ James (553 rushing yards, 7 TDs)
- QB Rodd Hudson III, Jr., 5-10, 191 (672 passing yards, 5 TDs; 289 rushing yards, 2 TDs)
- WR Latrell Caples, Jr., 6-0, 173 (470 yards receiving, 3 TDs)
Just the facts
- The series between JT and Lancaster is tied at 1-1, with John Tyler winning the most recent game, 31-28 in 2013.
- John Tyler is averaging 470.4 yards per game and 521.6 yards and 45.3 points in its past three games.
- Lions running back Roderick Hawkins has rushed for at least 100 yards (including two 200-yard games) in three of his past five games. He has totaled 100 yards in four of his past five games.
- JT receiver and Houston commit Ke'Andre Street is averaging an insane 28.6 yards per reception.
- Lancaster is averaging 37.7 points per game and giving up 16.3
- The Tigers' three losses have come against teams with a combined record of 22-6.
- Lancaster running back Tre Bradford broke out for 384 yards and three touchdowns in the Tigers' bi-district game against Wakeland.
Key matchup: John Tyler's ground game against the Lancaster defense. The Lions have been blessed to control games thanks to Roderick Hawkins and Cameron Grant. The two backs have split carries all season long, This has allowed them to remain relatively fresh throughout the game and led to JT's 269 rushing yards per game average. Hawkins in particular has played well the past five games, tallying at least 100 total yards in four of them.
If Lancaster hopes to have any chance to win this game, it must slow down the JT running attack. Forcing the Lions to throw could pay off, though Devlen Woods and Ke'andre Street have been playing the best they have all season down the stretch. The Tigers defense will have its hands full all afternoon.
Don't be surprised if: The Lions defense forces a couple of turnovers. It did last week and JT has seemed to find its rhythm in the past couple of games. Ja'Bralen Yarber is able to get in the backfield to put pressure on the quarterback. Roy Lampton came away with a fumble recovery and an interception in JT's bi-district victory. Christian Hartsfield and Jarrius Lane have been solid all season. There are a lot of playmaker on this JT defense, and it should be all to hold Lancaster in check on Saturday.