|LONGVIEW - Tommy Burkett, as anonymous as a secret service agent this season, stepped in and recorded an assassination plot that took the life of another of American's No. 1 citizen - Longview.
Tyler Lee's Burkett burst into full blossom here Friday nigh, enabling the Rebels of Tyler to come out smelling like a rose. He practically covered the Longview Lobos during this game of a crop failure as he led the Rebels to their first district 8-AAAA victory over the Longview club, 22 to 14, before a crowd of 6,500 fans on a colorful fall evening for football in Lobo Stadium.
Tyler Lee, charging fiercely back fro the rim of despairing defeat, struck the Lobos down in the second half of action like the cowboys in the western movies killing the Indians.
For one tantalizing moment, after the kickoff, it appeared that the Lobo would gain another victory. But many, many mistakes cost them the contest. However, it can be said that the Lobo fought a great ball game all the way despite the error on the film which they will see Monday afternoon.
The Lobos came to play Friday night and before all fans had made it to their seats in Lobo Stadium had 14 points on the scoreboard.
It was what they used to call a storybook ending. You see, here it was halftime, with Longview holding a 14 to 7 lead over the Rebels. And Tyler Lee ended up winning it 22 to 14.
If you could hear the Rose Capital folks cheering all the way to Tyler, part of the credit was due to left halfback Jimmy Graham, 175-pound All-State candidate, and fullback Eric Wilcox, 194-pound senior, carrying the ball for the Rebels.
The Tyler club exploded like a road rush of Rebels on New York City, and not did not slow down in the third and fourth quarters. However, it was all Longview in the first and second.
Lee won the toss and elected to receive. Ronald Cook of Longview boots the ball down field and it was returned by Larry Tunnell to the 28 from the seven. Four plays later the Rebels were forced to punt. Tommy Allbright of Longview returned the ball from the 15 to the 23.
Four plays later on the 40-yard line of Longview, the Lobos needed 11 yards for a first down and it was fourth down. Cook booted the ball and the Longview line rushed down field like they were headed to an apple garden. They hit the receiver and the ball was recovered by Longview on the 42-yard line of Lee.
Quarterback James Street started the Lobo offense moving. Two first downs and the Lobos were knocking on the goal line at the 17-yard stripe.
Street rolled to his right and sailed the ball right into the arms of Cam McLarty of Tyler on the 10-yard line. He was grounded by a host of Lobos.
Six big plays later the Rebels had to punt again and Tunnell had the job. He booted the ball and it rolled out of bounds on the 42 of Longview.
On the first play quarterback Street took the ball and on a very good fake gave the ball to wingback Rusty Musser. Musse rolled to his right and sailed the ball downfield into he arms of talented catcher-split end David Reese. Reese caught the ball on the 26 and ran from there to the goal line for the six pointer that nearly shook the Rebel money out of their pockets.
Ronald Cook booted the extra point to give the Lobos a 7 to 0 lead.
Reese played the best game of his high school career here Friday night. His hustle and drive was very outstanding. Many passed from the arm of Street nearly landed into his arms. This Lobo gave 200 percent effort. He and the entire club can walk down the Longview street with their heads high after the game they played here Friday night.
Big and talented Mike Collier recovered a fumble from the hands of Tyler's quarterback Mike Rowan on the 12-yard line of Lee with 1:51 to go in the first period to set up Longview's second and last touchdown of the evening.
From the 12, the Lobos went to work and on fourth down from the one, fullback Glenn Cobb plowed over the middle of the line for the touchdown. 13 to 0.
Cook again booted the extra point, 14 to 0, with 14 seconds left on the clock.
After the kickoff by Cook, the Rebels started their touchdown drive from the 31-yard line of Lee.
Tyler moved the ball from the 31 to Longview one-yard line in 10 plays and three first downs. From the one Wilcox went over right guard for the touchdown with 6:22 to go in the second chapter of this district 8-AAAA opener. Jack Isom booted the extra point to make it, 14 to 7.
In the third period of action the Rebels scored on a very easy play. Well it was easy! Isom kicked off to the Lobos and the ball sailed to Don Stout. However, the ball fell short of Stout and before Stout could get the ball Richard Smith of Lee rushed on the ball and recovered it for Tyler on the 14-yard line.
Two plays later saw halfback Jimmy Graham from the 12 go over right guard for the touchdown. 14 to 13 in favor of Longview with 11:10 to go.
Will Tyler go for two? Yes. Wilcox sprinted around the left side for the two-pointer. That's what the Texas Longhorns should have done last Saturday, some street-corner quarterbacks say.
With Lee leading 15 to 14, things really didn't look so dark for the Lobos.
After the Tyler quick touchdowns the Lobos took over on their own 15-yard line with Street barking the signals. He moved the ball downfield with Don Stout and Glenn Cobb doing most of the toting.
On the 37-yard line of Lee, the Lobos recorded a 15-yard penalty to move the ball back to the 47. Two plays later Cook punted date ball out to stop the drive.
With 5:54 on the clock, Mike Crawford recovered a Tyler fumble by Graham on the 41 yard line of Lee.
Four plays later the Lobos were on the 26-yard line of Lee and Street passed the ball into the arms of Larry Tunnell on the 23 and he reached back to the 35 before he was tackled by a host of Lobos.
The Rebels moved the ball to the 37 before they were given a 15 yard penalty by the game officials, which pushed the ball back to the 20. Three plays later Tunnell punted the ball out and Street took the kick and raced back to the Lobo 43.
With 2:47 to go in the contest, the Lobos were fighting the clock.
On fourth and 13 to go for a first, Street sprinted to his right and made two yards. However, the officials called a 15-yard penalty against Lee and placed the ball on Lee's 41.
On the 26-yard line, Street rolled to his left side and sailed the old ball in the air where Tommy Burkett caught the ball on the 25 and headed toward the west sideline. He continued to run near the chalk line until he crossed the 40-yard line of Longview, then he cut to his middle to the goal line. His step were 75 yards and six more points for the Rebels. Isom booted the ball through the uprights for the extra point to give Lee the 22 to 14 victory.