The Bridgeland Bears of Cypress, TX are a 2nd year program. Based on the way they played and were coached, you wouldn’t have known it. The Bears leveraged a great game plan of running the ball versus the Vipers three man defensive front to set an aggressive tone and to dominate time of possession. The Bears game plan and aggression spilled over to the Bears defense which dominated the Viper offense in the first half. While things seemed very bleak after the Bears 2nd score of the 1st half, LB Jax McCauley came up with a huge block of the Bears extra point attempt. At the end of the first half, the Bears led 13-0 while holding the ball on offense for almost 80% of the time.
The Vipers offense unfortunately started the 2nd half just like the first half with a three and out. Fortunately for the Vipers, their defense showed true grit and would bend but never break. The Viper D held Bridgeland scoreless in the 2nd half up until the 11 minute mark in the 4th quarter. At that point, the reality of win or go home hit the Vipers and they finally came out of their four corner offense. With 11:16 left in the game, the Vipers began their most important drive of their season on their 24 yard line. The Vipers opened up the offense led by QB Dru Dawson keeping the ball and running with it for key yards on RPO’s and scrambles. WR Trey Mongauzy drew a critical PI on a 3rd and 13 to keep the drive alive. SAK Beau Dawson picked up three yards on a critical 3 and 2. Finally, Blake Youngblood came up with a huge 3rd and 6 conversion for a first down right at the sticks. Two plays later, Dru Dawson hit Youngblood with a beautiful pass for a 29 yard TD score. After the K Charlie Fournier PAT, the score was now 13-7 with 6:35 left in the game.
The Viper D would be asked to come through again for Vandegrift to give the Viper offense a final attempt to win the game. While the Viper D gave up one first down, that would be it. With 3:48 left in the game, the Vipers took over on the 25. The Vipers had 1 timeout and less than four minutes to drive 75 yards to extend their season. On first down, emerging playmaker Blke Youngblood caught a 16 yard pass from Dru Dawson. After a 4 yard run by RB Ryan Sheppard, WR Trey Mongauzy drew another PI which moved the Viper drive to the Bear 40 yard line. On 3 and 4 from the 34, DB/Kaleb Lewis made a huge 4 yard reception for a first down. Lewis caught the quick pass from Dawson and was met by a defender right at the 1st down marker. Lewis battled to just nudge across the line for a 1st down. On 2nd and 9 from the 29, Dawson spotted WR Trey Mongauzy open over the middle on a post. Dawson threw a perfect pass hitting Mongauzy in stride at the 9 yard line. Mongauzy cruised to the end zone to knot the game at 13-13. The ensuing OL Landon Thomason snap to holder QB Ryan Back was perfect and Charlie Fournier finished the job by punching it through the uprights for a 14-13 Viper lead with 1:37 remaining in the game.
Fittingly, the Viper D was once again called upon to finish out the game. The Viper D was game for the challenge and did not allow the Bears a first down. Victory Vipers 14-13! The Vipers move onto the Area round for a rematch with Klein Collins. #TWO19 #DontStopBelieving
-by Morgan Radocha