For the second consecutive week, the Anna Coyotes fell behind early and were unable to recover despite improvement in their play.
Anna traveled to Frisco Memorial Stadium on Sept. 27 to take on the undefeated Lone Star Rangers, and after falling behind 21-0 early in the second quarter were not able to rally late and fell 34-20.
The Coyote defense forced a punt on the opening drive of the game, but the offense coughed up the ball on a fumble to give Lone Star the ball back. The Rangers took advantage of the opportunity with a 25-yard scoring pass to take the early lead.
Anna drove deep inside Ranger territory on its next two drives but was unable to find the end zone, turning the ball over on downs on two consecutive fourth down tries.
"We just have to be more consistent on offense," Anna Head Coach Jason Heath said. "That has been what is hurting us in the last couple of weeks. We have to be able to execute and not turn the ball over."
Every time Anna failed to get into the end zone, Lone Star was able to put points on the board. The Rangers trotted out to a 21-0 lead with more than seven minutes to go in the half.
The Coyotes hung close to Lone Star statistically, matching them on first downs at 19 and finishing the game with nearly 400 yards of offense, split close to even between rushing and passing. Issac Armijo finished the game with 159 yards on the ground and two scores to lead the Coyote rushing attack.
"We have shown we can move the ball against everybody we played we just haven’t been able to cash that into points," Heath said. "I thought our defense did a good job most of the night except for about four or five plays and those ended up being TD’s. We have to make sure we do our job on every play."
In Anna’s final drive of the first half, it finally was able to complete a drive, this one a 75-yard scoring surge in which Anna had five first downs. Quarterback Ty Chapman was able to connect with John Erwin and Joshua Coutee for big plays on the drive. Armijo capped it off with a 2-yard touchdown run to get Anna on the board.
The Coyotes were shut out in the third quarter but scored twice in the fourth. The first touchdown came early asChapman and Coutee connected from 15 yards out. The second came late in the game as Anna drove 66 yards in a just over a minute to cut the lead to 14.
Lone Star improved to 5-0 with the win, but Anna was the first team all year to hold it under 48 points.
The Coyotes will take on another fast-paced, undefeated team this week when they play host to Ferris for their homecoming and pre-district finale. Anna won easily over Ferris last season, but Heath knows it will be a challenge.
"Ferris is another undefeated team that we will have to be able to adjust to their speed," Heath said. "They have several kids on offense that can fly. We have to be gap sound defensively and not allow the big play. They will come after you on defense so we will have to be able to pick up blitzers and be efficient."