PLANO – Throughout their time together on the gridiron, McKinney North junior quarterback Cam Constantine and senior running back Lamar Lucas have been quite the dynamic duo.
That held true yet again Friday night in the Bulldogs’ bi-district postseason matchup with Frisco Centennial, as the two combined for 443 total yards of offense and six touchdowns in a 56-14 victory over the Titans.
“[Constantine and Lucas] are just ultimate competitors,” said Mike Fecci, North head coach. “They’re very talented, they work their tails off and they are very, very competitive. That shows when we get out here on Friday nights, and I’m glad they’re on our team.”
These two foes squared off in Week Three earlier this season in what ended up being a fantastic finish as North narrowly escaped with a 34-28 victory.
The rematch on a much bigger stage in the first round of the playoffs proved to be a different story, however, as the Bulldogs dominated from the opening kick until the final whistle in a 42-point win.
“The time these kids have put it in and to be rewarded with a game like this was huge for us,” Fecci said. “A goal of our program is to be playing on Thanksgiving and we get to do that next week.”
The Centennial offense struggled much of the night without the services of senior running back Hunter Williams, who led District 13-5A in rushing yards at season’s end. The senior did not play due to a torn ACL that he suffered last week in the Titan’s 56-49 win over Heritage, and juniors B.J. Wilson and Justin Smith stepped up in his place to rush for 164 yards on 37 carries.
However, Centennial’s offensive woes weren’t what cost them the ballgame, as the defense had a difficult time containing the Bulldogs’ explosive offense that scored 28 points in the second quarter alone.
North set the tone early with a 41-yard touchdown run from Constantine and 13-yard score from Lucas to give the Bulldogs a 14-0 lead at the end of the opening quarter before blowing things wide open in the second.
Although the Titans got on the board following another Constantine score on a 31-yard strike from senior quarterback Brock Floyd to junior wide receiver Jacob Harreslon midway through the second, the 5-foot-11 dual threat Bulldogs passer then orchestrated consecutive scoring drives to give North a commanding 35-7 advantage.
“McKinney North just came out and dominated,” said Matt Webb, Centennial head coach. “We had a hard time stopping them and had a hard time keeping them off of the field. We made mistakes on offense and just didn’t execute the fundamentals.”
To add insult to injury just before the half, North senior defensive back Devin Rivers picked off Floyd and took it to the house, as Fecci’s ballclub never looked back with a 42-7 halftime advantage.
The North defensive intercepted Floyd three times on the night and allowed a majority of Centennial’s 319 total yards late in garbage time.
“Those turnovers were huge,” Fecci said. “Any time you can get those, especially in the red zone, they’re giant and turnovers are magnified in the playoffs.”
North will now face the winner between Highland Park and Texas High next week at a time and place yet to be determined.