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  • Tyler Harden

Katy wins the program’s ninth state championship with win over Cedar Hill

Photo Credit: Houston Cronicle

ARLINGTON, TEXAS— The Katy Tigers and the Cedar Hill Longhorns are two of the most storied programs in the state of Texas. Both programs are also very familiar with each other. The two teams met in a trilogy of state championships from 2012-2014; Katy won in 2012, and Cedar Hill won in 2013 and 2014. Katy and Cedar Hill are used to winning state championships for their programs; Katy has won 8, and Cedar Hill has won 3. This year was just another typical year for them, as they are both loaded with Division 1 talent, and have dominated all season. It all came down to who wanted this state championship more.

Neither team could get a rhythm on offense to start the game, but Katy was the first to get something going. After the Tigers went down the field to the Cedar Hill 37-yard line, quarterback, Caleb Koger, found Taylor Saulsberry for a 37-yard touchdown to make the score 7-0 (PAT good). The Katy defense made an impact shortly after. Linebacker, Shepherd Bowling intercepted a pass on third down for the Tigers, and gave the offense the ball at the Cedar Hill 40-yard line. The first quarter ended with a 7-0 Katy lead.

Katy kept going at the start of the second quarter. Caleb Koger found Nic Anderson for a big completion to bring up 1st and goal from the Cedar Hill 3-yard line. Running back, Jalen Davis, then punched it in for a 3-yard touchdown to give the Tigers a 14-0 lead (PAT good). After Cedar Hill was forced to punt, the Tigers went back to work. Katy marched all the way down the field to the Cedar Hill 19, but after being pushed back by the Longhorn defense, they were forced to settle for a 49-yard field goal.

Cedar Hill still couldn’t get anything going after holding Katy to just a field goal, as they were forced to punt once again. Katy took advantage. Fullback, Isaiah Smith, found room to run and ran for a 55-yard touchdown (PAT good). Katy went into halftime with a big 24-0 lead.

The Tigers kept their momentum going into the third quarter. Katy immediately went down the field, and were brought to the Cedar Hill 27-yard line after a penalty on the Longhorn defense. However, the Tigers couldn’t get in the end zone, and were forced to kick a 21-yard field goal to take a 27-0 lead.

The Longhorns were able to find a rhythm on offense on their next possession, as they made plays down the field into Katy territory at the 48-yard line. The Tiger defense wasn’t fazed. Cedar Hill fumbled, Katy cornerback, Hamilton McMartin recovered, and returned it 53 yards to the end zone for a touchdown (PAT good).

Cedar Hill wouldn’t go away, as they started to pull some tricks from up their sleeve. After the Longhorns were brought up to 4th down, Kylon Ashton faked a punt and ran 67 yards to the Katy 5-yard line to make it 1st and goal for Cedar Hill. Quarterback and Tennessee signee, Kaidon Salter, took over from there, running in the end zone on 3rd and goal for a 4-yard touchdown (PAT good).

The Katy offense went right back to work, as running back, Seth Davis, ran for a 21-yard gain to the Cedar Hill 28-yard line. The Longhorns wouldn’t let them get any farther than that, and the Tigers were forced to settle for a 38-yard field goal to make the score 37-7. Cedar Hill still wouldn’t go away, as Kaidon Salter showed why he is one of the best quarterbacks in the state of Texas. He was able to find Anthony Johnson for a 48-yard gain to the Katy 20-yard line. Salter then did the rest himself. After throwing another first down pass, Salter ran 10 yards into the end zone for a touchdown, and made the score 37-14 to end the third quarter.

The Tigers made noise to start the final quarter. Seth Davis found room to run and ran 25 yards into the end zone for a touchdown to extend Katy’s lead to 44-14 (PAT good). It was then time for the Katy defense to make some noise, as Cal Varner intercepted a pass from Salter, and returned it 15 yards for a touchdown (PAT good). After Cedar Hill was forced to punt on their last offensive possession, Katy was able to run out the clock and secure the 6A Division 2 State Championship win.

Katy will finish their season with a record of 13-1, and will end the season as one of the best teams in Texas. The Tigers have the second most state championship by a program in Texas behind Aledo, who has 10. Cedar Hill will end their season with their second loss of the season, and with a record of 12-2.

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