MESQUITE, Texas -- In a game with huge playoff implications in District 15-4A, West Mesquite put itself in the driver’s seat for a spot in the Class 4A playoffs.
The Wranglers used a strong second half to defeat Red Oak, 28-17, Friday evening at Hanby Stadium. With the win, West Mesquite (4-5, 4-3) is now tied with Mesquite Poteet for the fourth playoff spot out of 15-4A. The Wranglers beat Poteet, 22-21, earlier this season to earn the tiebreaker edge.
West Mesquite trailed 17-14, but held Red Oak (4-5, 3-4) scoreless in the second half. The Wranglers took the lead for good with 8:12 in the third quarter, as sophomore quarterback Shateek Nasir connected with sophomore William Stanley on a 56-yard touchdown pass.
The Wranglers added an insurance touchdown with 4:06 in the fourth, as two-way player Kameron Miles rushed for a 20-yard score. West Mesquite’s defense stepped up big in the second half, particularly in the final quarter. Steven Butler Jr., Cranston Jones and Nick Akins all accounted for interceptions in the fourth. Jones’ pick with 1:06 remaining doused Red Oak’s chances for a rally, as the Hawks were looking to trim the lead to four.
West Mesquite jumped on the board first at the 8:58 mark of the first quarter. Running back Darrius Payne-Edwards took a handoff 55 yards from the left side of the field to the right. For the game, West Mesquite rushed for 224 yards and three touchdowns as a unit.
Payne-Edwards led the charge with 140 rushing yards and a score. Miles finished with two touchdowns and also had some key plays in the secondary. Cameron Bausley led Red Oak with 113 total yards (81 rushing) and a receiving touchdown.
A win next week against Forney, or a Poteet loss to Waxahachie, will automatically get the Wranglers in the playoffs.