Despite a valiant fourth-quarter comeback, Hillcrest’s bid for its first District 6-5A Div. II victory fell short on Friday.
The Panthers suffered a 35-28 loss to Mesquite Poteet at Franklin Stadium, meaning Hillcrest will need to repeat its late-season surge from a year ago in order to return to the playoffs.
Carter Sido passed for 242 yards and two touchdowns, and he also ran for a pair of scores for the Panthers (2-2, 0-2).
Shannon Cruse was his top target with six catches for 97 yards, but he might have been even more valuable on defense with two first-quarter interceptions. Reggie Williams had a 45-yard scoring catch in the first quarter and Donald Olusegun added a touchdown in the fourth.
The Pirates benefited from two fumbled kickoffs by Hillcrest and capitalized both times. The second instance led to a Nicholas Aguilar scoring pass to Jeremiah Batiste late in the third quarter to make the score 35-14.
Poteet’s Joey Shaw accounted for 224 all-purpose yards and two touchdowns — one on the ground and the other on a pass reception.
The Pirates (4-2, 3-0) picked up a forfeit win last week against Spruce due to COVID-19 protocols, then lost at Odessa Permian in a nondistrict replacement game.
Meanwhile, Hillcrest will look to remain in postseason contention with a key district game next week against Conrad.