|TEXARKANA - Longview's hopes for a District 8-AAAA championship suffered a severe setback Friday night when the luckless Lobos dropped a heartbreaking 14-16 decision to the Texarkana Tigers.
Longview almost completely dominated the entire encounter and led the Tigers in every statistic except the big one - scoring.
All the scoring came in the first half, and the second period was 24 minutes of nothing but frustration for the clawing Lobos.
Longview spotted the Tigers a quick 16 points before finally snapping out of it, but as was determined at the close of the game, the early lead was too much to overcome.
The host Tigers registered the first tally when halfback Don Hackleman returned a Robert Myers punt 80 yards for a Texarkana touchdown. The touchdown came the first time the Tigers touched the pigskin, and it gave them a 6-0 front position.
Texarkana made it 8 to 0 when quarterback Johnny Wyrick connected with halfback Donnie Richardson for the point after.
Texarkana continued moving the scoreboard when the Tigers crossed pay dirt again early in the second quarter. It was Hackleman who posted the score and this time the speedy halfback notched the count on a three yard slant over left tackle to climax a 69-yard drive. Wyrick ran the PAT to make the score 16 to 0.
Texarkana's second touchdown was set up on a 22-yard run over right tackle by Hackleman.
Longview finally snapped out of its drowsiness and it was rifleman Myers who triggered the shot. Myers got busy through the air and connected on three passes to spark the Lobos to a 56-yard scoring drive.
Myers connected for the score when he sneaked up the middle from one yard out. The touchdown came with less than five and a half minutes remaining in the first half.
Myers' attempted pass for conversion was no good, and Texarkana led 16-6.
The scoring drive was highlighted by pass completions of nine, 14 and 16 yards from Myers to halfback Hawk Clements and fullback Don Petty.
Longview clawed back again in the closing two minutes of the half when Myers engineered an airway attack to move the Lobos 84 yards in ten plays for the six-pointer.
A four-yard pass from Myers to end Danny Seale accounted for the tally after Myers had connected on passes of nine, 15, 11, 10 and seven yards in the drive. Clements ran the PAT and the Lobos trailed by only two points, 14 to 16.
Texarkana almost notched another score when quarterback Wyrick hit fullback Gene Dunn on a 49-yard pass completion with only one second left in the first half.
Dunn was wide open and headed for pay dirt before Clements caught him on the eleven and brought him down.
Longview came back strong in the second half and it looked for awhile as if the Lobos were going to have little trouble in posting a win. Big Don Petty started off the fireworks with runs of 22 and 12 yards for two quick first downs. Myers then had a second down pass attempt intercepted by halfback Richardson and then the Lobos' forward unit went to work.
Longview's rugged up-front uni proved up to the occasion as they defensive line snuffed out every Tiger rushing attempt.
Longview's line, led by Charles Richmond and Bill Ewing, was exceptionally tough as they allowed the Tigers only 135 yards rushing throughout the tilt.
Longview took possession again, and again the Lobos were driving goalward when Richardson intercepted another Myers pass.
Don Petty came up with an interception for the Lobos two plays later to put Longview back in the picture. This swap-off of the pigskin continued throughout the third period and Texarkana's two-point margin loomed larger than ever.
Longview had possession of the ball only two times in the fourth quarter. A pass interception cut short one drive, and a fumble snuffed out the other - and that was the ball game.
The last fumble came with only 1:30 remaining in the game and the Tigers took possession on the Lobos' 22-yard line. The Bengals moved to the four-yard line in four plays to run out the clock.
Masterful Myers enjoyed another of his good nights as the slinging quarterback completed 16 of 25 passes for 156 yards.
Petty led the Lobo ground gainers with 93 yards on 14 carries.
The loss puts Longview a half game behind the Tigers in the race for the title. Texarkana now has two wins and a tie, while the Lobos have tow wins and a loss.