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8th Maroon Lions dominate Duncanville Kennemer

Defense limits Kennemer to -15 yards of offense
The eighth grade Maroon Lions are looking every bit the part of the strongest class of Ennis football players to come up through the program in several years.
Ennis (3-2-1) won its third-straight game on Tuesday night, taking Duncanville Kennemer to the woodshed on both sides of the ball in a 32-0 clinic. While the Lions had six pass plays for at least 10 yards, Kennemer finished with -15 offensive yards – a total that included a 40-yard run. It was the home team’s only first down all night.
“The kids are starting to see the overall picture – that we do have a chance to win district,” said coach Quinton Brown.
“They’re playing at a higher level and really executing the plays we’re calling. I thought this was the best our sideline has been all year in terms of guys encouraging their teammates. Everybody got to play, including the White team players we brought.
“We responded well to overcome the penalties and turnovers we had. I don’t want to take anything away from our guys because they executed, but Kennemer was a lot weaker than most teams we’ve played.”
To the coach’s point, Ennis lost the turnover battle 2-1 and had a touchdown called back due to a penalty, while countless other big plays were nullified due to penalties. Even so, the Lions still had their way.
Trevor Davenport threw for 183 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions. Sam Walker and Keymon Hines each ran for touchdowns, while Elijah Roy had a huge game with three catches for 102 yards and two touchdowns. Brandon Adams (2-39) and Marvin Cox (2-28) also made plays through the air.
Defensively, Montrel Newsome (shared a safety with Adams, forced fumble, tackle for loss), Cox (sack, tackle for loss) and Hines (two tackles for loss) led the way. Roy intercepted a pass, while Xavier Tippen and Patrick Baxter shared a sack. Other Lions with a tackle for loss included Trevor Goehring, Harris King, Walker, Jorge Renteria and Demodrick Pace.

Maroon Lions don’t waste any time
From the opening moments of action, Kennemer was in a world of trouble. Renteria made a tackle for loss on the home team’s first offensive play and then a sack by Cox forced a punt. Cox proceeded to return the punt 32 yards to the Kennemer 5.
“Jorge can help us on both sides of the ball,” Brown said.
“He’s a good lead blocker for our running backs and can also make an impact on defense. Marvin gets the team fired up vocally and he also provided a spark with that punt return. He can play almost every position on the field outside of defensive tackle and offensive line and he gets after it.”
On Ennis’ second offensive play, Hines bulled his way into the end zone from two yards out for the game-winning points. A successful Alex Sanchez two-point kick put Ennis up 8-0.
“Hines is a hard-nosed runner who’s built low to the ground,” the coach said.
On the next Kennemer possession, Hines and Cox tallied tackles for loss while Tippen and Baxter combined on a third-down sack. The punter actually booted the ball into his teammate as Goehring pounced on it.
“Baxter has been one of our key O-linemen, but we needed him to step in at defensive tackle and he really likes it,” Brown said.
“Tippin did a great job tonight and helped give us a fast start.”
With outstanding field position to begin the second quarter, Davenport quickly completed a 10-yard pass to Cox and then a 17-yarder to Roy. At the Kennemer 3, Ennis committed a trio of penalties as it backed up 25 yards. Though Davenport drew a roughing-the-passer penalty when he completed a pass to Hunter Isom, his next toss was picked off at the Duncanville 4.
The turnover merely put the Ennis defense in good position on this night. The first Kennemer play was good for a safety as Adams and Newsome combined to bring the back down in the end zone (10-0).
“Brandon always has a great attitude,” Brown said.
“Like Marvin, he doesn’t care what position he’s playing as long as he’s on the field. He knows our defense so well that he keeps everybody on the right track. On the safety, Montrel grabbed the guy by the jersey and then Brandon got there to bring him down.”
Walker then returned the safety punt for a touchdown only to have it nullified for a block in the back.
Still, Ennis was just 17 yards from a score. With 55 seconds left in the half, Davenport rolled out and hit Roy in the corner of the end zone as Ennis went up 18-0 on a Sanchez kick.
“Trevor looked great throwing the ball tonight,” the coach said.
“He threw an outstanding ball to Elijah and they’ve had a connection all year. Roy runs good routes, is fast and he finds a way to get it done.
“Sanchez brings a whole other dimension to the scoring with those two-point kicks. The only reason why he’s not always kicking on the Maroon team is because he’s the White team quarterback. He really likes it and I see him kicking on varsity one day.”
Roy got the second half started with a 43-yard kick return and on Ennis’ second offensive play Davenport connected with Adams, who made a video-game juke on a defender for a 36-yard gain. Walker took the ensuing handoff three yards up the middle for a 24-0 advantage (kick blocked).
“We took a look at Brandon at tight end this week and he certainly has good hands,” the coach said.
“We knew Sam was a player and he’s really picked up his play recently.”
It was a new half, but the same old story for Kennemer in the third. Its offense went backwards thanks to consecutive tackles for loss by Walker and King. Walker returned the punt that followed 60 yards to the Kennemer 5, but it was called back due to another block in the back.
“Harris really gets after it and he’s tough because he plays through injuries out there,” Brown said.
Late in the third, Kennemer looked to get on the scoreboard as it returned an interception of a Davenport pass to the Lion 15. On Duncanville’s initial offensive play, Newsome forced a fumble that the home team recovered for a 15-yard loss. The Lions absolutely erupted at that point with three-straight tackles for loss by Hines, Pace and Goehring to get the ball back at the Ennis 43.
“Pace is a smart player who can make adjustments on the fly at outside linebacker,” Brown said.
“He’s been playing well from the time he first got a chance this year. Keymon really plays well at outside linebacker in defending all the sweeps we see. Trevor made a great play on fourth down to get our defense off the field.”
Kennemer again held Ennis without a first down early in the fourth quarter and again the Lion defense had an answer. On Duncanville’s first offensive play at midfield, the quarterback went deep and Roy hauled in the pigskin for an interception at the Ennis 10.
“Roy is leading the team in interceptions and I thought he was going to come up with it when they threw deep,” Brown said.
“I’ve never seen a junior high kid play the ball as well as he does in the air. In coverage, I haven’t seen him get beat on a pass this season.”
Davenport hit Cox for an 18-yard gain to get the offense moving again and, two plays later, the quarterback fit the ball right between two defenders as Roy ran a slant toward the middle. The receiver gobbled up the pass and sped 74 yards to the house as a Sanchez kick finalized the 32-0 score.
“That looked like a varsity play the way Trevor threaded the needle between those defensive backs and Elijah kept his concentration for the catch,” Brown said.
“Once he’s behind the secondary, there aren’t too many junior high kids who can catch him.”
In the final moments, Newsome made a tackle for loss to finish off his big night.
“Montrel clogs up the middle [at defensive tackle] and it allows our inside linebackers to run free because he normally requires a double team,” Brown said.
“He can really move for a big guy.”

Near and distant future bright for Maroon Lions
The eighth grade Maroon Lions started out 0-2 this year in their extremely tough district, and then tied DeSoto West.
“We were a play away from a win against both Cedar Hill Coleman and Duncanville Reed, while DeSoto West made a goal line stand on us at the end of the game,” Brown said.
“We’re just a few plays away from being undefeated. I’m so happy for these guys, especially when you consider that they only won one game last year against much easier competition. We’ve got guys who are playing at a high level and it’s rubbing off on their teammates.
“There’s good leadership with guys like Marvin Cox and Brandon Adams; plus the play of Elijah Roy really has the team believing in itself.”
Brown thinks the future is bright for this group of Lions because they have a lot of talent and speed. Beyond having a few very fast players, the coach said most of the team is fast – including the linemen.
The Maroon Lions will play their regular-season finale on Tuesday at home against Corsicana at 7 p.m., after the conclusion of the 5:30 p.m. White Lion contest. The team will then have a playoff game on Nov. 4.
“I think if we keep practicing as hard as we have been, we’ll win out,” Brown said.

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Posted by on Oct 22 2008. Filed under Editorials. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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