Bulldogs claim a piece of first district title since ‘09

Thorndale defense sets up dominating victory over rival Thrall

Seth Barker (17) scored on runs of 11 and 17 yards in the rout. Seth Barker (17) scored on runs of 11 and 17 yards in the rout. THORNDALE—While scoring 65 points is impressive no doubt, but holding a team to 37 yards rushing and picking off six passes might require a superlative or two.

For the second consecutive week, the Thorndale defense took a stand and allowed the offense to operate in great field position in a resounding 65-3 victory over rival Thrall in the 83rd meeting in the annual battle of Highway 79.

A f ter dropping the season opener, Thorndale has won seven straight and stand 7-1 overall and 3-0 in league play entering the final week of the regular season.

Thrall drops to 2-7 and 0-3.

As champions, Thorndale will receive a bye in the first round of the playoffs.

Even if they were to fall to Holland Friday on the road, the Bulldogs would enter the playoffs as the first place team because of their defeat of Flatonia, who must also defeat Thrall Friday.

Dillon Bankston had three catches for 43 yards in the Bulldogs playoff clinching win over neighbor Thrall. 
Reporter/Teresa Ging Dillon Bankston had three catches for 43 yards in the Bulldogs playoff clinching win over neighbor Thrall. Reporter/Teresa Ging The 65 points is the most Thorndale has scored since it beat Hallettsville Sacred Heart 66-25 last season.

It is the second highest score in the series, to a 75-13 Thorndale win in 2002.

The Bulldogs now lead the series 52-28-3 and has defeated Thrall seven straight times and 32 of the last 36 meetings.

Thorndale choked out any Thrall offensive effort, allowing just 107 total yards and only 37 on 27 carries.

When the ground game was shut down, the Tigers tried to overcome by turning to the passing game, but found a roadblock there as well as the Bulldogs picked off six passes.

Thrall completed just 6-of-25 passes for 70 yards.

Riley Schaefer nabbed two of the picks, giving him eight for the season.

“We’re just being very aggressive,” said Thorndale coach Brent Brevard, referring to his defensive unit. “ They are running well to the ball. They are playing lights out.

“We’re smaller than we were last year, but we’re quicker this year. Cody Niemschtk and Darius Brooks have really been playing well. Other coaches have been talking about Cody’s play.”

Offensively, the Bulldogs accumulated 436 yards and Schaefer was nearly perfect, hitting on 17-of-19 passes for a season-high 254 yards and three touchdowns.

Darius Brooks led Thorndale on the ground with 74 yards on just 10 totes with a couple of touchdowns that give him 18 for the season.

The Bulldogs constructed a 24-0 lead after the first quarter that swelled to 45- 0 by intermission.

Colton Austin scored all three of his touchdowns in the first half, two on connections with Schaefer from 12 and 23 yards out.

Austin, the Bulldogs top receiver on the season, grabbed five passes for 88 yards.

Seth Barker scored twice, on runs of 11 and 17 yards.

Scouting Holland With their 24-0 loss to Weimar last week, the Hornets (6-3, 1-2) will miss the post season even if they were to upset Thorndale at


Rushing—Brooks 96-657 18 TD, Schaefer 52-229 TD, Barker 27-215 4TD, McCoy 27-146 3TD, Austin 29-128 TD, Guzman 17-93, Kiesling 6-34 TD, Woelfel 3-18, Towery 2-4, Miller 18-55.

Passing— Schaefer 106-174-3, 1,545 yards, 18 TD, Miller 3-6-1, 71 yards, TD, Bankston 1-1- 0, 15 yards, TD.

Receiving— Austin 30- 504 9 TD, Guzman 17-319 3TD, Bankston 17-229 2TD, Miller 15-211 TD, Hafley 16-198 2TD, Gomez 3-26, Barker 4-28, Woefel 3-39 TD, Brooks 2-32, Schaefer 1-15 TD, McCoy 2-30. home Friday.

Holland’s lone district win came against lowly Thrall, 30-10.

The Hornets are a predominantly a running team, led by quarterback Seth Spinn, who has racked up 946 yards with 15 touchdowns. He averages 12 yards per carry.

Spinn, just a sophomore, has also passed for 529 yards and four touchdowns on just 67 attempts.

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