SOUTHLAKE - At this point of the season, the first game is just a footnote, but it's an interesting one. Southlake Carroll has won 12 straight games by an average score of 55-7, so how did the defending state champs get shut out in that first game in Allen's new stadium?
"Friday night lights, and all that stuff," said Dragons head coach Hal Wasson. "I think we got lost a little bit in the clutter."
Whatever happened in that first game hasn't happened since. They've won every other game by at least five touchdowns, and they've scored more than 50 points in nine of their 13 games. Their offense has been so good that it has overshadowed a defense that is allowing just over eight points per game.
"I kinda like flying under the radar," said Dragons safety Tanner Jacobson. "I don't care what other people think of us defensively as long as we're doing our job and we're winning."
"Watching the defense is great," said offensive tackle Cam Manning. "Having them do that makes our job a lot easier. (You) go out there and you know they'll take care of you on the other side of the ball."
Southlake Carroll has won eight state championships in its history, and this year's team may be playing better than any of them, which is why that first loss in Allen is so strange, and which is why this team should get a lot of credit for moving past that.
"I'm a big believer that the way you grow is through adversity," said Wasson. "Now adversity can conquer you if you allow it to. But fortunately for us, our football team grew through that adversity."
If Carroll can beat DeSoto this week -- and that's a big "if" -- they could play Allen in the semi-finals. If that game does happen, the only guarantee is it won't look anything like the first one.