Offense explodes on Senior Night
If there's a team in District 3A-4 that can stop Plainview's offense, it still hasn't been found.
Austin Carrera ran for 246 yards and James Bowker scored four touchdowns as Plainview steamrolled a once-formidable Pauls Valley team 71-27 on Friday.
"We're not going to smashmouth you, but if we execute we play pretty good offense," Plainview coach Chris Berus said. "Right now, we're executing pretty well."
As Plainview (7-2, 5-1 district 3A-4) celebrated Senior Night for nine young men on the football team, several members of that class were a part of the Indians' 10-touchdown night.
Carrera, a junior, and Bowker, a senior, combined for 376 yards and five touchdowns by themselves. Another senior, Chase Brooks, had two catches for 89 yards, including one on a breathtaking 61-yard score, where Brooks reached over the facemask of Pauls Valley defender Joni Morales to make the catch and sprint down the sideline.
It was the first of two first-quarter passing touchdowns tossed by quarterback Taber Jordan, who threw just six passes on the night but completed four of them for 116 yards, the last of which was an outstanding grab by Brandon Nowell in the back of the end zone.
When the dust was settled, and the staggering numbers tallied, Plainview had amassed 643 yards of offense, 527 of those on the ground, and scored 10 touchdowns.
"I think we're starting to realize how good we can be," Jordan said. "Coach has put into our brains, every single day, the idea of keep working hard."
Carrera earned almost half of those yards in his career-best performance. Carrera's 246 rushing yards came on just 15 carries, a clip of 16.4 yards per tote, and featured runs of 80 and 50 yards.
"The offensive line had a lot to do with it," Carrera said. "Every time I broke one, there was just a huge hole on the edge."
When Carrera couldn't quite finish the runs off, Bowker was there to push the pile into the endzone with brute physicality, scoring four touchdowns and rushing for 130 yards on just eight carries.
"We knew they were fast and that we would have to seal the edge off, which we did," Bowker said.
Lost in the offensive explosion has been the continued development of a solid Plainview defensive group. Pauls Valley quarterback Joe Kyle Foster threw for 347 yards on the game, but most of those came in the third quarter, and almost half came on Foster's three touchdown passes.
The rest of the game, the Indians were stifling, especially up front. The linemen bullied the Pauls Valley front, picking up three sacks and holding the Panthers to 60 yards rushing.
The Indians have rattled off five straight wins after a rough loss to Madill to open district play. By blowing out Pauls Valley, previously unbeaten in district play, Plainview all but locks up home-field advantage as the second seed in 3A-4.