Plano West tries to hand first loss to N. Mesquite


7:30 p.m. Friday at Mesquite Memorial Stadium

When we saw them last: Plano West edged out South Garland 21-17 in its second game of the season. North Mesquite handed South Grand Prairie its second loss in a row to a Mesquite school with a 29-9 win at the Gopher-Warrior Bowl.

2010 result: Turnovers killed North Mesquite in a 17-14 loss. The Stallions lost the ball three times by fumble and three by interception. North Mesquite fumbled a total of five times in the game. North Mesquite outgained Plano West by almost 100 yards.

What’s at stake: North Mesquite’s undefeated start. North Mesquite has raised a few eyebrows after three weeks of play, beating two teams expected to have strong seasons this year, Rowelett and South Grand Prairie, and taking care of business against North Garland. With a few more wins, North Mesquite could make a case for being one of the top programs in the area, but Plano West could have something to say about that.

Key matchup: Both team’s running games. Plano West and North Mesquite are fairly one-dimensional teams, using several backs to gain the majority of their yards on the ground. The team that can outrun the other, while keeping possession of the ball, can run down the clock and take the game.

Players to watch: North Mesquite has the advantage if they want to try and put the ball in the air with quarterback King Davis under center, but he will hand the ball off to Anthony Sims and Demarcus Luke, who will carry the majority of the offensive load. On offense, Plano West is all Carlos Wiggins, the team’s leading rusher and receiver. Linebacker Bryce Cottrell is the team's defensive leader and will be the main force in stopping the North Mesquite run game.

Prediction: North Mesquite 21, Plano West 10.