CL Hawks Finish Roller-Coaster Ride with Loss to Calallen, 37-31
Canyon Lake finished their roller coaster season by just missing a chance to record their biggest upset since the high school started playing football 13 years ago, 37-31.
Calallen has been a perennial football juggernaut for decades that had moved down from their 5A perch to the 4A classification which is usually a formula for domination when making a move in this fashion.
That could have had this 6-5 team (Canyon Lake) entering into this contest knowing that this game would be ending their Covid Season when that final clock showed 0:00.
“That is where we wanted to be,” Head Coach Charley Drum stated on how the Hawks had, one stop or play, to ice this 3rd ranked team in Texas and put them on the ropes. “We just did not make the plays we needed and they are a great football team but I am proud of our effort and we had a, 2-4 record with injuries, dealing with covid and we battled and took two ranked teams to the end.”
Coach Drum was talking about a Lampasas contest that was one fingertip catch in the end zone away that would have CL with a win in that game.
The manner, in this Area Round of playoffs, game started would put CL’s back to the wall right off the bat.
With a second offensive play, for The Lake, being a lost fumble and the Wildcats needing just two plays and less than a minute off the clock for that first score, 7-0.
This roller coaster ride would get a little height when Dalton Stanley was good on his 22 yard field goal after Canyon Lake had driven to Calallen’s 4 yard line and closing the gap, 7-3.
But Calallen flexed their muscles again this time with a 60 yard run by Jeremiah Earls and a quick answer to that Hawk’s field goal and 11 point lead, 14-3.
CL would respond with a 75 yard drive that took 8 plays that had a pass to Kolton Ramey converting a 3rd down and then a 47 yard touchdown pass to Jeremy Greene that helped instill some confidence and a, 14-10 deficit.
In the second quarter both teams scored converting turnovers for those points.
The Wildcats capitalized with an interception and another quick strike score that covered 18 yards and seeing this roller coaster ride back in the valley looking at that 11 point deficit again, 21-10.
The Lake would coerce their first turnover after recovering a Wildcat fumble which set up a short field for a score from 30 yards out. Two runs by Rivali that went 22 yards had CL in business with a first and goal on the 9 yard line.
Jesse Horner would have the honors scoring from 5 yards out and being down 4 points going into halftime, 21-17. (That was Horner’s 14 rushing touchdown in a season that has him ranked 4th in Hawk history)
Calallen would have the first possession to start this second half and a Hawk defensive stop would be paramount in helping make a statement and comeback.
That statement came from Greene with an interception and his 38 yard return that had the Hawks with a short field needing 32 yards for their first lead.
“Not much more we could do as we needed a few more breaks,” Greene said. “I am proud of our team and offensive/defensive line and so glad all our young kids got to play with this group of Seniors.”
A Jeremiah Johnson 1 yard catapult parted the Cats defense easily for a CL lead with right at 4 minutes remaining in the 3rd period, 24-21.
The Hawk defense would force a 3 play and punt sequence against the wind which had Canyon Lake needing 30 yards for more separation and seeing just how high this roller coaster would go for more thrills.
Rivali would take the rock up the middle for a 32 yard run and score, 31-21. This touchdown would help put that long ago fumble to start this game to rest for this Senior Running Back.
“I was 100% motivated and that drove me the rest of the game,” Rivali said when recounting on how his fumble moved him to play better during this battle. “We played well for most of the game and we came down to the end and overall we were a force against some of the toughest teams. But we just could not keep making mental mistakes.”
Those mistakes were part of that roller coaster season and this game that had those highs and lows equalling out for a final, 6-6 season.
Canyon Lake was not finished after another defensive stop that gave another chance to milk the clock and have this roller coaster ride finishing it’s improbable run and win.
That thought would not materialize after a penalty would nullified a Hawk first down and then a punt that would turn into a safety after the snap sailed over Tyler Pauly’s head, 31-23.
The Wildcats would respond with a 61 yard drive that had a screen play go for 40 yards and seeing a lead reduced to two points after Calallen’s two point try was thwarted and a much smaller lead, 31-29.
Those small mistakes would continue for Canyon Lake with a movement penalty on a short third down try and needing just 3 yards to eat more clock now was 8 yards and a tougher try against a good run defense.
Now the Hawks would need to punt against the wind and these Wildcats would make CL pay with a short field and a 38 yard run and lost lead, 37-31 with a little over one minute to play.
This roller coaster ride would come up short for this game and season with an incomplete pass on CL last chance drive and a, what could have been the greatest win, in Hawk history.
Now CL will start working for better results and a chance to finish their roller coaster ride at an all time high in the year’s to come.
Canyon Lake had a solid group of 15 Seniors that had bonded this team and will pay dividends for the upcoming years.
This Wildcat team was talented but more than anything else had suited up 35 Seniors that doubled CL’s Senior Class.
Calallen had 18 Juniors/Sophmores on their roster compared to 24 for The Lake with 9 of those being joined by their strong class of teammates that had just completed their 4th straight District Championship starting in the 7th Grade.
“They (Calallen) has had a chance to get their younger players into these type of situations for years and years,” Coach Drum said in what it will mean for CL’s younger players being able to make it to this Area Round. “With this type of experience you get to see how much better you can get and they are there and we are getting there.”
“I’m excited for next year,” Greene exclaimed. “We have a chance to be better!”
Can hardly wait to see this Hawk team in action next season but for now it is time to get off this roller coaster ride and wait in that long line for another try to finish the ride in grand fashion.
Next year’s roller coaster ride has loop-the-loops!!
Way to Go Hawks and Thanks to these Seniors!!
1 2 3 4 Final Calallen Cats 14 7 0 16 37 CL Hawks 10 7 14 0 31 Scoring Summary: CC-Marvin Beasley 24 yard run (Kieschnick kick), 11:09, 1st CL-Dalton Stanley 22 yard field goal, 3:57, 1st CC-Jeremiah Earls 60 yard run (Kieschnick kick), 3:39, 1st CL-Jeremy Greene 47 yard pass from Peyton McMullen, (Dalton Stanley kick), 1:09, 1st CC-Marvin Beasley 22 yard run (Kieschnick kick), 8:42, 2nd CL-Jesse Horner 5 yard run (Dalton Stanley kick), 3:35, 2nd CL-Helijah Johnson 1 yard run (Dalton Stanley kick), 3:50, 3rd CL-Ryan Rivali 32 yard run (Dalton Stanley kick), 1:36, 3rd CC-Hawks line for a punt. Safety on play, 10:12, 4th CC-Jeremiah Earls 39 yard pass from Ethan Salinas (run failed), 6:31, 4th CC-Ethan Salinas 38 yard run (Salinas run), 1:19, 4th Team Stats Cats Hawks Total Yards 322 283 First Downs 10 18 Rush/Yards 37/227 48-211 Comp/Att/Int 5/7/1 3/13/1 Passing Yards 95 72 Punts/Average 4/38.5 4/37.8 Fumbles/Lost 2/1 1/1 Penalties-Yards 9-55 6-50 TOP 19:42 28:18 3rd Down Conversions 3/13 23% 4/16 25% 4th Down Conversions 0/1 00% 1/3 33% Passing Comp Att Pct Yds Int TD Peyton McMullen 3 13 .231 72 1 1 Rushing Att Yds Ave Lg TD Ryan Rivali 9 82 9.1 32 1 Jesse Horner 16 65 4.1 15 1 Shayne Moss 7 27 3.9 11 0 Helijah Johnson 8 22 2.8 10 1 Patrick Almond 2 9 4.5 5 0 Peyton McMullen 5 5 1.0 8 0 Jeremy Greene 1 1 1.0 1 0 Receiving No Yds Ave Lg TD Jeremy Greene 1 47 47.0 47 1 Kolton Ramey 1 13 13.0 13 0 Tyler Pauly 1 12 12.0 12 0