The aggressive Highland Park defense has allowed an average of only seven points per game in its past four victories. The Scots have won 21 straight games overall. (Photo: Chris McGathey)
Highland Park is more than halfway to completing its first undefeated regular season since 2011. But the Scots can’t overlook anyone.
Although Dallas ISD foe Samuell shouldn’t present much of an obstacle for HP this week, the Spartans provide an intriguing footnote, having snapped a Scots winning streak in dramatic fashion almost two decades ago.
After a 10-0 campaign in head coach Randy Allen’s debut season in 1999, HP was upset by the Spartans 17-14 in the bi-district round of the playoffs. Samuell then lost to Ennis 62-0 the following week.
Two years afterward, the Scots got revenge by blasting the Spartans 71-20 in the regional quarterfinals before falling to eventual state champion Ennis a week later. Plus, both Allen and longtime Samuell head coach Steve Pierce are still on the sidelines.
The stakes will be considerably lower for Friday’s matchup at Highlander Stadium, with HP looking to stay tied with Lancaster atop the District 6-5A Division I standings while Samuell’s postseason hopes appear slim.
The Scots (6-0, 3-0) were impressive on both sides of scrimmage during a rain-soaked 28-7 road victory over Mansfield Legacy last week.
Junior quarterback Chandler Morris continued his stellar leadership of the offense by accounting for four touchdowns (including one rushing). He has thrown for more than 1,600 yards and 19 scores through six games, while also running for a team-high 267 yards and eight touchdowns.
Meanwhile, the HP defense has allowed an average of just seven points per game over the past four games, and has forced nine turnovers during that span. Hudson Clark intercepted two passes against the Broncos.
The Spartans (3-3, 1-2) have been outscored by a combined 97-14 during consecutive defeats against Lancaster and Mansfield Timberview.
Against the Wolves, they played without dual-threat quarterback John’Turius Shaw, who is the focal point of the offense. The dynamic senior has rushed for 503 yards and 11 touchdowns this season and also has tossed three scoring passes.