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Wednesday, September 24, 1997

Unberhagen unstoppable in Little River-Academy victory

By JAIME ARON / AP Sports Writer

DALLAS (AP) -- Little River-Academy coach Grady Barganier had devised a game plan to spread out the Troy defense. Two plays into the game, he chucked the plan and decided to revolve the offense around Ronnie Unberhagen.

The result: 39 carries for a school-record 358 yards, the most in the state this season, and four touchdowns, carrying Class 2A Academy to a 33-21 victory and putting Unberhagen atop this week's Associated Press Honor Roll.

"I really think it was the best individual performance and the best team performance I've seen at Academy," said Barganier, who has been at the school 24 years, the last four as head coach. "We were underdogs and ended up winning by 12."

The night to remember was the culmination of several superb efforts.

--Offensive linemen Nick Turner, Cole Ramsey, Justin Kopriva, Brian Hulsey, Ryan Doskocil and tight end Chad Cother did a great job against a bigger, stronger defense and eventually wore them out. The Academy players were still going strong in the fourth quarter, just like Barganier told them would happen while prodding them through strenuous conditioning drills that included lots of running.

--Fullback Lee Adcock succeeded at blocking on the sweep, clearing room for Unberhagen to turn corners without much resistance.

--The receivers looked to make downfield blocks whenever possible -- "which is sometimes hard to get them to do," Barganier said -- and usually were able to hold them.

--And, finally, the 5-foot-10, 165-pound Unberhagen used his speed (he was the state champion in the 800 meters as a junior and runner-up as a sophomore) and strength (he bench presses nearly 300 pounds) to take advantage of it all.

"I've never seen a night when everything goes that right," Barganier said. "We knew we were capable of doing it if everything clicked, and it did."

Part of the thrill was how unexpected the outburst was.

Academy lost to Troy last year, mostly because of trouble running the ball. And, being limited to 17 healthy players, Barganier had decided to tinker with his offense and go away from his usual plan of running 70 percent of the time.

"We were going to try some one-back sets and put three receivers to one side, or two to each side," Barganier said. "We wanted to spread those big boys out and try to wear them out by making them run.

"But then on the first couple of plays we ran the ball, had some success and decided to stick with it."

Academy ended up passing all of three times, gaining a whopping eight yards. Everything else the Bumblebees got came on the ground, with plays pretty much equally going to the left, right and up the middle.

"Even late in game, when we felt like they knew we were going to run, we were still able to do it," Barganier said.

Unberhagen had 314 yards and four touchdowns on 40 carries in the first two games this year. He basically doubled each of those numbers on Friday.

There were several nifty runs along the way.

"He had one right before halftime where he went about 10 yards, broke about four tackles and was gone," Barganier said of Unberhagen's 48-yard touchdown that tied the game at 13 just before halftime.

"Then we were trying to run time off the clock when the fourth quarter began, pitched it to him and he went around the end and scored again from about 45 yards," Barganier said, laughing.

Other outstanding Week 3 performances included: ALL-AROUND

--J.D. Wilson scored all of Ranger's points in a 34-32 loss to Gorman on touchdown runs of 11, 1 and 33 yards, an 86-yard run when he took a lateral on the old hook-and-ladder play, ran in a two-point conversion and threw for another two-point conversion. The points were first of the season for Ranger, the first of Wilson's varsity career and they came while wearing three different uniform jersey numbers. Wilson, a wide receiver the last two years who moved to running back this season, had to change from jersey Nos. 17 to 80 to 88 because of a rule that prevents players from wearing bloody clothes. The blood was his, caused by a cut lip that was later reopened.

--Michael Lusby ran for 204 yards and four touchdowns, returned a kickoff 93 yards for another score, made 11 tackles and had two interceptions in Spearman's 48-19 victory over Clarendon.

--Troy Sumrall scored on punt returns of 60 and 73 yards, had touchdown runs of 15 and 16 yards and caught a 12-yard touchdown pass in Nederland's 41-0 victory over Port Arthur Austin.

--Sophomore Vontez Duff had a 70-yard touchdown run, touchdown catches of 50 and 9 yards and 198 total yards before leaving Copperas Cove's 45-0 victory over Round Rock McNeil with 8:35 left in the first half because of an upset stomach and dehydration.

--John Serrill scored five touchdowns in Smithville's 48-28 victory over Lake Travis, running for 210 yards on 23 carries and catching three passes for 107 yards.

--Clint DeGroot ran for four touchdowns and 173 yards, and passed for two more and 158 yards as Santa Fe beat Galena Park 56-27.

--Dudley Klatt ran seven times for 177 yards, including fourth-quarter touchdown runs of 55 and 76 yards, and completed four passes for 80 yards, including a 30-yard touchdown, as Orange Grove beat Mathis 36-12.

--David Lyons had a 28-yard rushing touchdown and scored on fumble returns of 47 and 45 yards in Ingleside's 31-19 victory over Rockport-Fulton. He also returned a fumble 85 yards for a touchdown in the season opener.

 

--Chris Spivey ran for 296 yards and five touchdowns in Groveton's 49-32 victory over Diboll, upping his career statistics to 4,283 yards and 52 touchdowns. The senior, who has played on varsity since he was a freshman, would have to nearly double that to challenge Rodney Thomas' school record of 8,441 yards.

--Astolfo Venzor ran 27 times for what's believed to be a school-record 294 yards, marking his third straight 200-plus game, and had three touchdowns in Dumas' 34-0 victory over Perryton. He also made four of five PAT attempts.

--Rod Nash gained 285 yards and scored four touchdowns, including an 82-yarder, on just 13 carries in Linden-Kildare's 42-8 victory over Pittsburg.

--Reggie Duncan ran 20 times for 298 yards and three touchdowns, including a game-winning 7-yarder as Killeen Ellison upset No. 2 Converse Judson 42-35 in overtime. Duncan's other scores were of 42 and 13 yards, and he had runs of 60 and 66 yards ending at the Judson 1.

--Keith Frazier had 257 yards and two touchdowns in Corpus Christi Carroll's 17-14 loss to San Antonio Southwest.

--Joffrey Reynolds had 241 yards and three touchdowns in Tyler Lee's 43-23 victory over Texas High. It was his second straight 200-yard game.

--Michael Demps, a converted quarterback, ran 25 times for 242 yards and four touchdowns in Fort Worth Dunbar's 35-7 victory over Dallas Samuell, providing former Converse Judson assistant Bob Jones his first head coaching victory.

--Toby Cisneros ran for 260 yards and two touchdowns in Laredo Martin's 41-35 loss to South San Antonio.

--Quanta Gregg scored on runs of 45, 23 and 67 yards in Dallas Spruce's 34-2 victory over Athens.

--Clarence Whitfield had touchdown runs of 34, 37, 9 and 2 yards in Stamford's 34-19 victory over Haskell.

--Brett Robin ran 13 times for 199 yards and five touchdowns, and returned a kickoff 101 yards for another score in Austin Westlake's 51-6 victory over Bastrop.

--Tellis Redmon had 164 yards and four touchdowns on 13 carries as Colleyville Heritage beat Joshua 45-7, improving to 3-0 a team that last year went winless in its debut season.

--Jesse Hawkins ran 40 times for 181 yards and two touchdowns as Robstown beat Sinton 24-21 to improve to 3-0 after going 1-9 last year.

THROUGH THE AIR

--Jordan Wilson was 16-of-35 for 345 yards and three touchdowns in Grapevine's 27-26 victory over Flower Mound Marcus.

--Patrick Hutka was 18-of-36 for 323 yards and two touchdowns and ran 16 times for 93 yards and another touchdown in Rogers' 47-34 victory over Riesel. Michael Williams caught seven of the passes for 143 yards and two touchdowns and Nelson Kortis had six catches for 117 yards.

--Beau Trahan was 14-of-23 for 309 yards and four touchdowns, with Patrick Robinson catching nine passes for 219 yards and three scores in Bay City's 50-14 victory over Kingsville.

--Kevin Branch was 20-of-29 for 304 yards and four touchdowns in Fort Worth Carter-Riverside's 28-27 victory over Hillsboro. Branch's offensive coordinator is Archie Coolie, a former head coach at Mississippi Valley State, where his pupils included Jerry Rice.

--Jarad Richards was 11-of-16 for 292 yards and three touchdowns in Cross Plains' 39-6 victory over Miles.

--Casey Printers threw touchdown passes to four different receivers and ran for another in DeSoto's 49-21 victory over Crowley. The hard-throwing junior was 13-of-26 for 240 yards and a touchdown.

--Matt Schultze caught six passes for 134 yards, including touchdown grabs of 14, 23, 53 and 19 yards in San Antonio East Central's 42-7 victory over Austin Johnston. The four TDs broke the school record of three set two years ago by Eric Schultze, Matt's brother.

--Tight end Jacob Sanchez caught seven passes for 227 yards and three touchdowns in Laredo United's 42-33 victory over San Antonio Brackenridge.

--Adam Dunn was 11-of-15 for 211 yards, including touchdown tosses of 24, 73, 25 and 10 yards in New Caney's 34-6 victory over Vidor.

--Colby Freeman was 11-of-21 passing for 185 yards and two touchdowns and ran for 93 yards, including a 63-yard touchdown, in Brownwood's 29-7 victory over Belton.

DEFENSE

--Jose Barron made 15 solo tackles, knocked down two passes and caused a fumble in Dalhart's 17-13 victory over West Texas. Barron made four fourth-down tackles to stop West Texas drives.

--Mason Dutton, son of former Dallas Cowboys defensive end John Dutton, made 12 tackles, had three sacks and deflected three passes in Plano's 27-6 victory over Allen. At 5-foot-11, Mason is nine inches shorter than his dad, but he makes up for it with great technique learned at home. In defeat, B.J. Ferguson was in on 16 tackles, had a sack and caused a fumble.

--Tony Powell had 10 tackles and two interceptions, returning one of them 90 yards for a touchdown in Borger's 57-24 victory over Guymon, Okla.

--Joseph Turner intercepted three passes, batted down another, had five unassisted tackles and assisted on two others in Cross Plains' 39-6 victory over Miles.

--Korey Morris had 20 tackles and an interception and Jason Rutledge had 20 tackles and a sack as Rising Star held off Throckmorton 14-10.

--Roland Guerrero had 11 tackles, including two for losses, a sack and a blocked pass as San Antonio Jay rallied from a 12-0 halftime deficit to beat Eagle Pass 28-12. It was the second straight week the linebacker-turned-lineman led the team in tackles.

--Jonathan Palafox had 9-1/2 tackles, two sacks, an interception and recovered a fumble as Sweetwater defeated Frenship 42-20.

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