It was a tale of two halves, as the Canyon Eagles and Andrews Mustangs collided in their final tune-up before their playing in their respective districts. The first half belonged to Canyon, and Andrews took control of the second half.

Canyon’s first half was just enough to beat out Andrews’ second half, as the Eagles held off the Mustangs 38-20 in a non-district clash on Friday evening at Happy State Bank Field at Kimbrough Memorial Stadium.

Due to those five first half turnovers – four interceptions and a fumble – the Eagles rolled out to a 38-0 lead by halftime.

“I think that our defense did an incredible job in both halves,” Canyon head coach Blake Bryant said. “We put a lot of pressure on them in the second half. I was proud of the kids, because they contained an explosive offense.”

Canyon will move into the bye week with an unblemished 7-0 record, and improved to a 4-0-1 all-time record against the Mustangs. The Eagles will return to action on Oct. 26, when Canyon begins District 4-4A Division I play by in a northward excursion to Dumas.

Andrews fell to 5-2 and saw their five-game winning streak come to an end. The Mustangs now move into an open date next week, before traveling to Big Spring for their District 2-4A Division I opener on Oct. 26.

 “For the past three weeks, we had to play from behind,” Andrews head coach Ralph Mason said. “In the first half, we were not focused and we were not executing. At halftime, I chewed them out a little bit and they come out and they played great.”

Following a 37-yard field goal by senior kicker Brayden Welch at the 9:33 mark of the initial period, a fumble by the Mustangs prompted Rikel – a verbal commit to the Air Force Academy – to drive the Canyon offense down the field with ease. The 81-yard drive culminated in a wildcat play that saw senior wideout Jake Gilley connect with a diving Shane Whitworth for a five-yard touchdown catch with 2:51 to play in the quarter.

By the end of the first 12 minutes of play, Canyon held a 10-0 advantage and had possession of the football by way of a Daniel Musgrave interception.

The second quarter was dominated by the Eagles, as Rikel connected with senior receiver Brett Cobb for a 12-yard touchdown pass at the 11:06 before slinging a 20-yard touchdown reception to fellow senior Cade Olson. With 7:54 left in the first half, Canyon pushed their lead to 24-0.

Less than five minutes later, Rikel cut through a seam and burst open for a 79-yard touchdown run to extend the Eagles’ advantage to 31-0. After another interception by the Eagles, Rikel found paydirt from one yard out with 44 seconds remaining in the first half.

At halftime, Canyon had created a wide 38-0 gap.

Andrews came to life in the second half, beginning with a one-yard touchdown dive by junior running back Esau Flores at the 7:53 mark of the third quarter. A little more than five minutes later, Rikel’s pass was deflected and picked off by Alan Rodriguez, who took the ball into the endzone for a 43-yard touchdown return.

The Mustangs continued their rally early in the fourth quarter, as junior quarterback Brett Leach slipped a screen pass to Markeese Lawrence, who ran in to the endzone for a 25-yard score.

With 7:36 to play, Andrews had cut Canyon’s lead down to 18 points at 38-20. Andrews had another chance to chip away at the Eagle lead, before Leach’s pass was picked off by Cobb at Canyon’s 19-yard line to seal the victory.

Rikel spearheaded the Eagles, going 14-of-24 for 186 yards and two touchdowns. Rikel also rushed for 141 yards and two more scores.

Canyon 38, Andrews 20

Andrews 0;0;14;7–20

Canyon 10;28;0;0–38

FIRST QUARTER

C–Brayden Welch 37 FG

C- Shane Whitworth 5 pass from Jake Gilley (Welch kick)

SECOND QUARTER

C–Brett Cobb 12 pass from Lawton Rikel (Welch kick)

C–Cade Olson 20 pass from Rikel (Welch kick)

C–Rikel 79 run (Welch kick)

C–Rikel 1 run (Welch kick)

THIRD QUARTER

A–Esau Flores 1 run (Marc Solorzano pass from Brett Leach)

A–Alan Rodriguez 43 INT return (conversion failed)

FOURTH QUARTER

A–Markeese Lawerence 31 pass from Leach (conversion failed)

 

Andrews Canyon

First Downs;13;21

Rushing Yards;113;281

Passing Yards;175;186

Total Yards;288;467

C-A-I;11-32-5;14-24-2

Punts-Avg.;4-44;4-43

Fumbles-Lost;2-1;0-0

 

Penalties-Yards 8-75 8-80