After two wins to open the season, the Prosper football team ran into a buzz saw Friday.
The Southlake Carroll defense smothered Prosper (2-1) on Friday night at Children’s Health Stadium, forcing four turnovers and holding the Eagles — who were a plus-71 through its first two games — to zero points in a 31-0 Dragon victory.
Prosper’s final non-district game is on the road next Friday against Arlington Lamar, a needed tune-up before opening District 5-6A play on Sept. 24 against undefeated Little Elm.
“We have a lot of things to clean up and work on,” said Brandon Schmidt, Prosper head coach.
On Friday, Carroll methodically punished the Eagles with a quick pass attack and a strong ground game. Quarterback Kaden Anderson finished with a touchdown pass, running back Owen Allen gained 183 yards and scored twice, and three-star receiver RJ Maryland caught a touchdown in the second quarter.
But it was Carroll’s defense that made an imprint on the game.
Prosper junior quarterback Harrison Rosar threw a fourth-down interception on the Eagle’s first drive of the game, and on the first play of the second quarter, Carroll’s Luke Ledbetter recovered an Eagle fumble just past midfield.
The play of the game came before halftime, when Rosar was strip-sacked by Nate Gall near the Carroll 20-yard line. Linebacker Cade Parks picked up the bouncing ball at the 32-yard line and ran 68 yards the other way — untouched — for a touchdown and a 17-0 Dragon lead.
Besides resulting directly in a touchdown for Carroll, the strip-sack also halted Prosper’s best offensive drive of the half. And three plays before the turnover, Rosar underthrew a wide-open Tyler Bailey on a deep post route that would have resulted in a touchdown if it was caught. A potential 10-7 game turned into a 17-0 hole that Prosper couldn’t dig out of.
Prosper finished the game as a minus-3 in turnovers and only 170 total yards.
“You have to take care of the ball,” Schmidt said. “You can’t make mistakes like that against a team as good as Southlake and expect to do anything. I’ve got to watch the tape, but I know we have some things to work on.”
For Prosper, Rosar finished with 103 yards passing and three interceptions. Malik Daley rushed for 23 yards, and Bailey and Rosar had 20 rushing yards each. Bailey also led all Prosper receivers with 64 yards through the air.
The Carroll football team made national headlines earlier this year when star quarterback Quinn Ewers, a senior and top-ranked prospect, decided to forgo his final high school season and enroll early at Ohio State University. That put the seemingly locked-in quarterback position at Carroll up for grabs.
Anderson, a junior, played two-and-a-half quarters for the Dragons before head coach Riley Dodge inserted sophomore Caden Jackson for the remainder of the game.
Southlake averaged 5.71 yards per rush, while holding Prosper to only 2.23 yards per rush. Carroll had 13 first downs (Prosper only had nine) and outgained Prosper offensively, 257-170.
Celina blanked by top-ranked Argyle
After surviving the first two state-ranked tests of its preseason schedule, Celina never got out of the gates on Friday in a 23-0 loss at Argyle.
The Eagles, ranked No. 1 in 4A Division I, outgained the Bobcats 301-127 and benefited from a 5-0 margin in turnovers on the night. Three of those takeaways directly led to points.
After surrendering a field goal on its opening possession, the Celina defense held Argyle out of the end zone on its next three possessions. The Eagles found their footing with a pair of touchdowns inside the final 7:03 of the second quarter for a 16-0 halftime lead that ballooned to 23-0 in the third quarter on a 45-yard interception return for a touchdown by Jett Copeland.
Quarterback Noah Bentley was limited to just 56 yards on passing with four picks on 7-of-16 attempts. Sean Rabe was the Bobcats’ leading rusher at 35 yards with Trae Hollins logging 34.