Even with the Parkland Matadors coming into Thursday Night’s Bi-District Playoff matchup with an overall record of 3-7 for the season, the Austin Panthers knew that they were not to take them lightly.
The Matadors ensured they were respected at Austin’s R.E. McKee Stadium and they started their scoring frenzy with 7:05 left in the opening quarter with a 19-yard pass from Keyshon Zaldivar to Fernando Estupinan Ruan to make it 7-0, Matadors.
With 8 seconds left in the First Quarter, Austin’s Jayden Wilson had a 2-yard TD run to tie the ball game up, 7-7. On their very next drive, Parkland’s Zaldivar found Donte Lewis for an 11-yard Touchdown Pass with 9:35 left before halftime to make it 14-7, Matadors.
Austin had a decent run drive late in the Second Quarter to bite off a lot of time and slow down the Parkland momentum and that ended with a 2-yard Luis Fernandez Quarterback keeper to tie the ball game up 14-14 with a little over 2 minutes left before halftime.
That was enough time for the Matadors to fit in 2 more scores before the half ended.Parkland’s next score came with 1:35 left before halftime with a 5-yard Isaiah Beasley Touchdown run. The Matadors then had an interception with 49 seconds left before halftime, which led to a 16-yard Touchdown pass from Zaldivar to Estupinan to send Parkland into the half with a 28-14 lead.
Parkland’s dominant play continued in the 2nd half. Isaiah Beasley had his 2nd touchdown run of the night with 8:35 left in the 3rd Quarter to extend the Matadors’ lead, 35-14. Then, with 3:41 left in the 3rd Quarter, Zaldivar threw a spectacular and precise deep pass to Donte Lewis for an 81-yard yard touchdown to make it 42-14, Parkland.
The game’s final score was a 4-yard Jayden Wilson Touchdown run. The Parkland Matadors defeated the Panthers emphatically, 42-21.
Austin’s impressive and hard fought season came to an end. The Parkland Matadors will play Lubbock Cooper – who blanked their opponent on Thursday night (42-0) and are 10-1 on their season – in the area round of the playoffs next week at a neutral site.
After the game Parkland Coach Eric Frontz talked about the win
Here are Donte Lewis’ thoughts on the game
Paul David Oliver Reporting