Granger starts fast in win over D’Hanis


     Floresville -- Granger’s first five possessions all resulted in points Friday night, Nov. 18, on the way to a 41-6 area playoff win over D’Hanis.

     The Cowboys’ season ends with a 7-5 record and a bi-district championship.

     Granger (10-2) will advance to the Class 2A-Div. 2 regional semifinals this Friday, Nov. 25, where they’ll face Falls City, a 29-20 winner over Sabinal in the area round. The Granger-Falls City game is at Seguin’s Matador Stadium, with a 7 p.m. kickoff.

The Lions took the opening kickoff and drove 59 yards on six running plays, with TJ McClelland scoring from six yards out. Jose Valverde added the first of five extra points.

     With the Cowboys facing a 3rd-and-long, McClelland struck again, intercepting a D’Hanis pass and returning it 17 yards for a touchdown and a 14-0 lead with 7:43 still to play in the first quarter.

     After a 53-yard punt from D’Hanis’ Markus Hernandez, Granger needed just two plays to go 87 yards. The last 72 came on a McClelland run, who scored his third TD with 4:55 left in the quarter.

     The Lions drove to the D’Hanis 23 on their next possession, where Valverde kicked a 40-yard field goal as the second quarter opened.

Dante Diaz returned the ensuing kickoff almost to midfield, but D’Hanis was held to three-and-out once more. A seven-play drive was capped by an eight-yard pass from Nathan Tucker to Tripp Wilkie, giving the Lions a 31-0 lead midway through the second period.

On 3rd-and-5, the Cowboys picked up their initial first down of the game and then some. Raine Redden passed to Eusebio Tapia, who got behind the coverage, and went 76 yards for a D’Hanis TD.

     D’Hanis fumbled the second half kickoff, and the Lions turned that into a 33-yard scoring drive, capped by a pass from Tucker to Trae Herrera. Moments later a Thomas Hall interception led to Valverde’s second field goal, a 25-yarder with 3:52 left in the third.

Layton Herrmann raced 46 yards to the Granger 19-yard line, but the Cowboys fumbled it away on the next play.

Herrmann added a 36-yard run in the fourth quarter, but the Cowboys’ last drive of the season stalled at the 24.