FRISCO — The little mistakes by Denison eventually turned into big things for Frisco Reedy, and the Yellow Jackets were never able to climb out of a first-half deficit.
What was a manageable deficit quickly got away in the third quarter as the Lions scored three times in a five-minute span on the way to a 45-20 victory over the Yellow Jackets in District 7-5A (II) action at The Star on Thursday in a game moved up a day and to a new location due to impending bad weather Friday.
Kyrion Rosser had 23 carries for a career-high 167 yards and a touchdown and Keleon Vaughn returned an interception 74 yards for a score for Denison (2-2, 1-1).
Josh Foskey threw a pair of touchdown passes to Ryan Middleton and ran for a pair of TDs for Frisco Reedy (4-0, 2-0).
Reedy broke a 24-7 game open when it scored three plays into the third quarter. Michael Ferrara, who finished with 11 carries for 99 yards, gained 32 before Middleton’s second TD catch of 24 yards.
A bad snap on a Denison punt less than a minute later ended with William Harbour falling on the ball in the end zone for the touchdown.
Denison then got to midfield but turned it over on downs and Foskey capped the ensuing drive with a 29-yard TD run on fourth-and-one for a 45-7 advantage in the middle of the third.
The Jackets tacked on a pair of touchdowns in the fourth quarter. Senior Shona Taylor caught his first touchdown pass, a five-yarder, from Cade Gordy, just inside the right pylon with 6:29 left.
Vaughn ended the scoring when he stepped in front of a throw by Peyton Roberts near the right sideline and brought it back 74 yards for the score. It was the eighth-longest defensive touchdown in school history.
Denison nearly got on the board again with a drive to the one-yard line but was stopped twice in the final seconds.
Jadarian Price added 19 carries for 53 yards for the Jackets, who finished with 210 yards rushing but needed 59 carries to get there.
It couldn’t have been a better start for the Jackets, who went 75 yards in seven plays to open the game with a touchdown drive.
Freshman Dameon Smallwood had a 14-yard reception — the first of his career — on third-and-six to keep the chains moving and then Rosser popped a 51-yard run before getting pulled down just short of the goal line.
The senior battered his way through the middle of the line for the score less than two minutes into the contest.
From that point, however, Denison struggled to get anything going on its next six series, not counting letting the half run out. Four of those drives went three-and-out, another was an interception in its own end and the best of that bunch ended up being a turnover on downs just inside the red zone.
That possession came in the early stages of the second quarter when the Jackets made a fourth-down stop of their own. Reedy had a 10-7 lead and took over at the Denison 39 after a poor punt. But then the Lions turned it over on downs.
The Jackets headed the other way, quickly crossing midfield and reached the 23-yard line but the drive stalled and Price’s fourth-down catch was well short of the marker at the 19.
The Lions tied the game on their opening drive when Ferrara got around the left end for an 11-yard touchdown run. The prior play was a diving one-handed grab by Nolan Matthews for 28 yards, which was preceded by an off-sides call on third-and-three to give Reedy a fresh set of downs.
The next Lions possession was a turnover on downs at the Jacket 29 but Reedy was in scoring position moments later following Harbour’s interception and 28-yard return to the eight. But Denison held firm and Harbour kicked a 27-yard field goal with 7:19 left in the quarter.
After Denison’s turnover on downs, Reedy headed the other way and Foskey connected with Middleton on a 50-yard touchdown pass that the wideout hauled in at the 25-yard line.
Reedy made it a 24-7 advantage right before the break when Foskey capped a 68-yard drive with a 14-yard scramble up the middle, breaking a couple of tackles to reach the end zone with 47 seconds left in the quarter.
The Lions had a balanced first half — 137 yards rushing, 131 yards passing — while Denison had 142 at the break with Rosser earning 91 of that on 12 carries.