On Saturday, I was at Heroes stadium for a second round playoff game between the Steele Knights (11-0, 6-0) and the Brennan Bears (8-3, 5-0). Last year these teams also played in the second round. Both were undefeated, with Steele ranked number one and Brennan number two in San Antonio all season long. Both also had outstanding senior quarterbacks (LG Williams from Steele and DeShawn Key from Brennan) who were the leaders on their teams. Steele won 24 to 12 last year.

This year, the match-up didn’t feel like it had the same hype. It was probably because Brennan had two losses coming into the game and they also didn’t have an explosive player who can take over a game on their own, like their quarterback from last season.

Brennan does have two really good running backs, senior Devonte Warren and sophomore, Jahmyl Jeter.

The Steele Knights are loaded with talent: junior quarterback Xavier Martin, senior running back Bryson Denley, and senior wide receiver Antoine Cox-Wesley have all verbally committed to Texas Tech University. They also have a junior running back, Travell Lumpkin, who gets a lot of touches.

On the very first play of the game, Xavier Martin, the junior quarterback for Steele, ran for a 68-yard touchdown. Last year, when they played Brennan, Steele scored on the second play of the game on a 61-yard touchdown run. Travell Lumpkin scored on a 16-yard touchdown run later in the first quarter for Steele. After one quarter, Steele led Brennan 14 to 0.

Brennan’s Devontre McGarity cut the lead to 14 to 7 after a 73-yard punt return for a touchdown. In Week 7, McGarity had 2 interceptions, one of which was returned for 85 yards. He is the stud on defense for the Brennan Bears. Two minutes after the Brennan score, Xavier Martin scored on a 54-yard touchdown and Steele led 21 to 7. The Steele Knights added a field goal to end the first half. At halftime, Steele led Brennan 24 to 7.

I must admit that I was rooting for Brennan to get some defensive stops in the second half and make this a close game. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen, as the Steele Knights scored two more touchdowns and their defense kept Brennan scoreless. Steele defeated Brennan by a score of 38 to 7. Steele will play the Del Rio Rams on Friday at 7PM at Bobcat stadium in San Marcos.

It was tough for me to see the Brennan Bears struggle on offense (but a lot of teams struggle when they play Steele). Jahmyl Jeter, the sophomore running back, had 11 carries for 73 yards. He led the team with 1,052 rushing yards and 16 touchdowns. I expect to see a huge increase in yardage and touchdowns for Jeter next season. Senior running back Devonte Warren had 16 carries for 66 yards. He finished his senior year with 930 rushing yards and 10 touchdowns. One of my favorite players on Brennan is senior wide receiver, Dayne Thomas. Thomas had just 2 receptions for 30 yards. For a team that runs the ball the majority of the time, Thomas’s final stats as a receiver are pretty darn impressive: 1,190 yards with 14 touchdowns. I am going to miss seeing him on the field, but I know we haven’t seen the end of Dayne.

Xavier Martin, Travell Lumpkin and Bryson Denley from the Steele Knights combined for 495 total yards with 4 touchdowns. Xavier Martin, the junior quarterback, had 14 carries for 261 yards with two touchdowns for 68 and 54 yards. He also had a 73-yard run late in the game. And he passed for 54 yards with 1 touchdown. That was, by far, his best rushing performance of the season. The Texas Tech Red Raiders are getting a very good dual-threat quarterback! Travell Lumpkin, the junior running back, had 13 carries for 93 yards with 1 touchdown and Bryson Denley, the senior running back, had 12 carries for 87 yards.

If you want to see the complete photo album from the game, please visit The Statman Speaks on Facebook.

Here are a few teaser photos from the game:

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