IRVING - Thomas Cook ran an interception back 77 yards for a touchdown and Longview’s top-ranked Lobos used a crunching ground attack to push Plano out of the schoolboy playoff with an impressive 26-0 win in Texas Stadium before 20,884 chilled fans here Friday night.
The game matched the state’s top two teams and the Lobos clearly proved they are the No. 1 outfit with 313 yards rushing and two ball carriers over the 100-yard dash mark, while holding Plano and highly touted QB Sammy Bickham to 174 total yards.
Longview will now advance to Regionals against Conroe, a 50-29 winner over Killeen Friday. Officials of the two schools will meet in Buffalo at 10 am Saturday to decide a site and time for next week’s encounter.
Longview moved restlessly down the field on its first possession of the game, using an 11-play, 65-yard march to go in the for the night’s first score. Quarterback Llewellyn Fambles, who picked up 106 yards on the night, kept the ball on a sneak play and zipped in from 11 yards out for the touchdown with 4:50 remaining in the first quarter.
Fambles and tailback Leo McCoy, who captured the game rushing honors with 110 steps, were credited with key plays in the drive, each picking up first-downs on third down situations. Fambles’ touchdown came on third and one.
The first half ended with a 6-0 score but it was all Longview really needed.
Longview’s vaunted Mean Green defense shut down the rifle arm of Bickham, who came into the game with 1,088 yards passing. Although the 6’1 senior had thrown just 2 interceptions all season, the Lobos pilfered 3 including Cook’s 77 yard beauty. Bickham finished with 8 completions in 19 attempts for 108 yards.
The game was also a rematch of last year’s bi-district contest in Tyler’s Rose Stadium. Plano won that game, 28-21. This win was Longview’s first victory in three meeting between the two schools.
Plano drove to Longview’s 10 late in the second period but middle linebacker Jeff More intercepted a Bickham pass at the 9 a hard rushing Steve Bradham held on to the quarterback causing a float.
The Lobos took the second half kickoff and drove 83 yards, consuming 9:07 in 10 plays, to take a 12-0 margin with 2:33 left in the third canto. McCoy capped the well-executed drive with a 3-yard blast.
Longview went to third down four times in the drive but convented each time to tay alive. Johnny Fuller came up with one key play on a reverse when he broke three tackles to pick up 9 yards.