SWEETWATER — Defense just wasn’t enough this time for the Stanton Buffaloes.
Holliday upended the Buffs run in the area round of the UIL football playoffs Friday in Sweetwater 16-0.
All the Eagles needed was two touchdown runs from Tyler Cole and a safety to move on in the playoffs behind a defense that limited Stanton’s best option on offense.
“They took our running game away from us,” head coach John Peterson said. “They were aggressive. We came out and gave it everything we had. It just wasn’t the best Friday night.”
Stanton was held to 59 yards of offense, 47 of which came from from the ground attack. Quarterback Tyler Fulton was just 1-of-4 for 12 yards.
Holliday’s 5-yard score from Cole and Stanton’s safety only had the Eagles up by nine heading into the fourth. But Cole’s huge 64-yard run in the beginning of the fourth broke the Buffs’ backs. He finished with 22 rushes for 183 yards. Adam Montez was the leading rusher for Stanton with 16 yards and Blake Evans had 14.
Amid an emotional atmosphere after the game, Peterson told his players they have a lot to be proud of this season. The Buffs finished 10-2, with the other loss coming to powerhouse Idalou.
“I just told them I don’t care what happens, you win 10 football games in a season, you’ve had an extraordinary year,” Peterson said. “You need to keep your heads high. You represented Stanton well.”
The Buffs will lose key players such as Fulton and Grayson Gray, but Peterson is optimistic about this offseason and next year. Stanton has built a tradition of being a perennial playoff team and he expects that to continue.
“It’s now up to the underclassmen to carry the torch,” he said. “They have to work hard and that’s what we’ll start doing to get prepared for next year.”