In a game which had many high’s and low’s for both teams, Flower Mound Marcus was able to thwart off a spirited McKinney Boyd comeback attempt and hold on for a 26-19 victory.
Marcus got a crucial interception by sophomore Zach Ohlemeier on Boyd’s first play from scrimmage in the fourth quarter and another interception by senior Ethan Barr on Boyd’s final offensive play of the game to preserve the victory. After out gaining Boyd 252 to 26 in the first half and storming out to a 17-0 lead at halftime, Marcus had to convert two fourth downs along with getting the two big INT’s to hold on for their first win of the 2019 season.
“Every time they started to answer we answered the bell, we got to learn to finish drives, not get penalties on special teams and we can not give up the big plays that we did defensively,” said Kevin Atkinson, Marcus head coach. “We provided some big plays and I was happy we answered the bell when they were rolling and that’s very important early on in the season.”
Marcus racked up 454 yards of total offense on the night with 352 of them coming from through the air by star junior quarterback Garrett Nussmeier who threw three big touchdowns on the night. Nussmeier’s 35-yard touchdown pass to junior J.Michael Sturdivant off a flea-flicker on the ensuing play after Ohlemeir’s interception, was the back breaking play of the night as it gave Marcus the momentum they needed to hang on down the stretch.
With his first breakout game of the season under his belt, Nussmeier and the Mauraders will be looking to build off tonight’s big-time performance.
“It was big to get the first win of the season tonight by coming out and playing hard because at the end of the day it’s not about stats or how many points we put up it’s about winning football games,” Nussmeier said. “I think we have a lot more strong-minded team than we had last year, and I think we are just going to keep building the confidence we need offensively and defensively and just continue to keep working.”
While Marcus was celebrating their first big win of the season, Boyd could not do nothing but ponder what could have been.
On the bright side, unlike in recent memories the Broncos get an “A” for how they responded to adversity in the second half. After only registering 26 total yards in the first half, the Broncos made major adjustments at halftime to get back in the game and give themselves a chance to win in the second half.
In the third quarter alone, Boyd got a 50-yard touchdown run by Ja’Tyler Shaw, a 58-yard reception by Jake Fex and 45-yard reception by Alex Taylor to rack up 217 yards in the quarter to get back in the game. Despite the valiant effort, Boyd wasn’t able to get over the hump but made a positive towards becoming the team they want to be in 2019.
“I’m just proud of our kids, we had mistakes and just kept shooting ourselves in the foot in the first half and even had coaching miscues with some signals and had a lot of things we needed to clean up,” Joe McBride, Boyd head coach said. “At halftime me and my coaches challenged our kids to win the second half and we did 19-9 by fighting. I’m so proud of Carter and those kids because at the end of the day as a coach you just want your kids to compete and I was proud of how we grew up tonight.”
One guy who plans on getting better from Boyd's loss is sophomore quarterback Carter Whitefield. Despite throwing for a career-high 297 yards, Whitefield made two costly mistakes in the red zone which could have changed the result in Boyd’s favor.
Although not happy by any means about his mistake, Whitefield like his coaches know Friday night’s game is a huge teaching moment for the young QB and will be better for it in the long run.
“I learned that there are teams much better than Naaman Forest and this game will make us better and will definitely make me a better player and I hope to show that on the field next week,” Whitefield said. “This game definitely sets the right tone because that team can play with the best of them. This game definitely fuels us because we are not down and our focused is only on playing good football, doing what we are supposed to do and coming back next week and getting a dub.”