NORTH RICHLAND HILLS- It was not supposed to be this easy for the Richland Rebels (4-1, 1-0) but on Thursday night was certainly was in a 52-0 trouncing of the North Crowley Panthers (1-5, 1-1) at the Birdville Fine Arts/Athletic Complex.
The Rebels dominated in all three phases of the game rolling up 457 total yards with a balanced mix of pass and run, the defense forced three turnovers and the special teams had a blocked punt return for a score.
The onslaught got started after North Crowley's first drive when Nico Ornelas blocked a North Crowley punt and returned it 30 yards for a score to put the Rebels up 7-0. After a Panthers punt Richland went right back to work scoring on a 17 yard run by Isaac Umesi to make it 14-0. The rout was just beginning as on the ensuing kickoff North Crowley fumbled setting up a short field for the Rebels. Nick Hodgson was able to make it 17-0 Richland on a 28 yard FG.
The secondary would get into the act at this point as DB Marcus Polanco back from a broken leg suffered in seven on seven would pick of North Crowley sophomore QB Josh Price to give Richland yet another short field. This time the Rebels would get seven on the board as junior WR Lorenzo Smith would score on a 15 yard touchdown pass from Tyler Cotton. Smith did most of the work after the catch making two sensational moves along the sideline to score putting RHS up 24-0 after a stunning first quarter.
North Crowley would try and get a spark by entering senior Torrelle Norwood into the game but on this night the Richland defensive line was just too much as they forced yet another North Crowley three and out. Sophomore RB Walker Burns would get into the act scoring on a three yard run for a 31-0 edge in the second quarter. Richland would add another score with two minutes left in the half as Tyler Lamkin caught a seven yard touchdown pass from Cotton and Richland held a commanding 38-0 lead.
The second half featured a lot of backups for both sides as with the result no longer in doubt both teams appeared to try and work in a few backups. Burns scored his second touchdown of the game on a 65 yard run right up the middle where basically he went untouched as the North Crowley defense was completely fooled. Late in the game the final margin of 52-0 was cemented as backup tailback Stephen Barrett scored from four yards out.