Kye Stone

Lewisville senior Kye Stone, pictured in previous action, caught a game-winning Hail Mary at the end of the regulation to lift the Farmers over Hebron, 37-35.

LEWISVILLE — After having its bid for a perfect season go up in smoke in the penultimate game of their district schedule, the Lewisville football team was once again lured into a 48-minute gut-check Friday against Hebron. The Farmers responded with a finish for the history books.

Moments after the Hawks seized a 35-31 lead with 15 seconds remaining in the ballgame, Lewisville countered with a walk-off Hail Mary — from 40 yards out, sophomore Ethan Terrell slung a ball downfield that was caught by senior Kye Stone 6 yards in front of the end zone. Stone turned, bolted forward and was tackled just over the goal line to lift the Farmers to an improbable 37-35 victory at Max Goldsmith Stadium.

“I saw the opening and just pushed with all my might. I battled,” Stone said. “This is my first year starting on varsity. I had a lot of adversity with a broken wrist and it just feels great to be back out here playing football.”

The Farmers’ walk-off win knotted them atop the 6-6A standings with Marcus at 6-1 — the Marauders defeated Lewisville the week prior, 40-27, for the head-to-head edge in the race for the district title. Lewisville will be the district’s top seed in the Class 6A Division I playoffs and will draw McKinney Boyd in a rematch of last season’s bi-district round, while Hebron — 5-2 and 6-6A’s bottom seed in 6A Div. I — will visit state-ranked Allen following Friday’s loss.

“It’s all heart. We were down with guys injured, yellow flags all over the field and just a lot that wasn’t going our way, but our kids just bowed up and fought,” said Michael Odle, Lewisville head coach. “They persevered through everything that was thrown at them and I couldn’t be prouder of them.”

It was a result that took Odle some time to process as his players bolted down the sideline to mob Stone after his momentous catch. It capped a wild night in Lewisville that heated up over the final 12 minutes.

With Hebron in front 28-21, the Farmers pulled with four points after a 45-yard field goal from junior kicker Freddy Joya with seven minutes remaining in the ballgame. Lewisville then gambled on a short kickoff that took one fortuitous bounce before being recovered by the Farmers to regain possession in Hebron territory. Moments later, Lewisville had its first lead of the night at 31-28 after Terrell found senior Armani Winfield for a 15-yard touchdown with 5:38 to go. 

“That’s stuff that we practice all the time. We try to put pressure on people with our special teams and that was just a great call by our special teams coordinator,” Odle said. “I was busy chomping the officials’ butts, so it was a great and a great setup.”

Hebron’s first attempt at a go-ahead score hit a snag after being stuffed on fourth-and-one at the Lewisville 28-yard line. With 2:54 to go, the Hawks’ defense managed to force a three-and-out to ensure one last crack at a comeback. 

With 1:11 remaining, Hebron senior Jacob Buniff led an eight-play, 67-yard drive capped on a 10-yard touchdown to senior Cobye Baldwin with 15 seconds to go for what initially looked to be the game-winning score. 

Lewisville sophomore Viron Ellison returned the ensuing kickoff past midfield and to the 40-yard line. Terrell and Stone took care of the rest.

“We weren’t down. We knew what we had to do and it meant going out there and finding a way to step up and make a big play,” Stone said.

The two district rivals combined for 851 yards of offense with a score of big performances all around. In victory, Terrell passed for 274 yards and two touchdowns, while Ellison — filling in for senior Damien Martinez, who was injured in the first quarter — logged 106 rushing yards and a touchdown. Stone paced the receiving corps with 206 yards and two touchdowns, while Winfield totaled two scores to go along with 103 receiving yards.

Hebron’s offense was headlined by 311 passing yards from Buniff, including 135 yards and a touchdown to senior Takoda Bridges plus 87 yards and two scores for Baldwin.

Friday’s wild fourth quarter was prefaced by a dizzying first half that featured momentous plays in all three phases.

The two teams combined for four turnovers over the first two quarters, all of which were converted into points. Hebron’s pass rush was disruptive from the onset, seldom affording a clean pocket for Terrell.

Such was the case with 3:48 left in the opening quarter after a sack resulted in a lost fumble by the Farmers. One play later, a coverage bust left Bridges wide open for a 23-yard touchdown catch from  Buniff for a 7-0 lead.

By the time Hebron’s offense next took the field, that advantage was already at 14-0 after the first of multiple special teams gaffes by the Farmers. Following a three-and-out on its ensuing drive, Lewisville had a punt blocked and recovered in the end zone by senior Matthew Howard with 1:46 to play in the opening frame.

The Farmers’ response was a swift one. After junior Cameren Jenkins picked off Buniff, Lewisville dialed up some trickery with a double pass that led to Winfield finding Stone for a 48-yard touchdown to cut the deficit in half, 14-7. 

One play later, a soft throw by Buniff was jumped by Farmer senior Jalen Piece and returned 28 yards for a touchdown — two scores just 10 seconds apart to knot the count at 14-14.

The Hawks answered with consecutive scoring drives. Buniff found Baldwin deep for a 58-yard touchdown to regain the lead at 20-14, and following another strip sack turnover, upped the count to 26-14 after Buniff scrambled for a 12-yard touchdown run.

Ellison pulled the Farmers back to within a score at 26-21 thanks to a 55-yard touchdown run, but miscues struck again moments later. After going three-and-out on its following offensive series, Lewisville had the snap on a punt sail out of the back of the end zone for a 28-21 Hebron lead that carried into halftime.

“We’ve just got to keep fighting. No matter what’s thrown our way, as long as these kids stick together, we can get through it,” Odle said.

For continued news and coverage on the local sports scene, follow Matt Welch on Twitter.

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