Saturday, September 12, 2009

The Sims cousins — Herschel and Ronnell — proved to be too much for the Cooper Cougars.
Herschel Sims ran for three touchdowns and Ronnell Sims ran for two more and threw for another as the Abilene High Eagles overcame Cooper 49-37 in the annual crosstown clash Friday at Shotwell Stadium.
Abilene High scored 21 unanswered points in the third quarter to overcome a 24-21 deficit and win its sixth consecutive game against Cooper.
“The thing I’m most proud of is how we came out in the second half. When it got down to it in the second half, we were stronger both mentally and physically,” AHS coach Steve Warren said.
It’s appropriate the winning team scored 49 points in the 49th meeting between the two schools. Cooper still leads the series 30-18-1.
Ronnell Sims, who ran for 202 yards on 14 carries, had the go-ahead touchdown — a 31-yard run — with 6:49 left in the third quarter.
After recovering an onside kick, Herschel Sims, who gained 97 yards on 12 carries, added a 10-yard touchdown run with 5:36 to go in the quarter.
AHS (2-0) then stopped Cooper (2-1), and Ronnell Sims answered with a 61-yard touchdown pass to Darius Joseph as time expired in the quarter.
Cooper would sandwich a 2-yard touchdown run by Davon Riddick and a 25-yard touchdown pass from Ryan Heslep to Khaeer Sonnier as time expired around a 19-yard touchdown run by AHS’ Tony Curtis for the final score.
“They’re pretty good, man,” Cooper coach Mike Spradlin said. “They’re pretty good. They’re about as good on offense as I’ve seen. I don’t think it’s as much a testimony to where we’re at defensively as it is where they’re at offensively.
Spradlin said the onside kick, recovered by AHS’ Boo Barrientes, kept the momentum in the Eagles’ favor.
“I’m not so sure they were onsiding it as much as they were pooching it, and we weren’t ready for it,” Spradlin said.
Warren said the Eagles were going for the onside kick — and it worked to their advantage.
“I think we took control,” he said. “I think I saw our defense, when we held them to three, we knew we could stop them. I think that was a huge confidence builder.”
Cooper’s Ryan Lucas had kicked a 32-yard field goal on the first possession of the second half to break a 21-21 tie.
Heslep, who was 29-of-44 for 264 yards, threw a touchdown pass to Reese Williams in the first half and also ran for another. Alford Cooper also ran for a touchdown for the Coogs.
Abilene High took the opening kickoff and drove 71 yards on four plays for the game’s first touchdown. Herschel Sims capped the drive with a 27-yard touchdown run.
Cooper answered with a 13-play, 67-yard scoring drive. Heslep threw a 6-yard touchdown pass to Williams on a third-and-goal play. It was the third converted third-down play on the drive, and Heslep also hit Sonnier for a 21-yard completion on a fourth-and-5 play from the AHS 30.
The Eagles struck quickly once again, thanks to a 22-yard kickoff return by Sawyer Tallant to the Coogs’ 35. Four plays later, Herschel Sims scored from nine yards out as AHS took a 14-7 lead.
Cooper responded with a 15-play, 82-yard drive. This time, Alford Cooper ran four yards as the Coogs tied the game at 14 early in the second quarter.
After stopping AHS for the first time of the night, the Coogs got their first lead on a 1-yard plunge by Heslep with 1:40 left in the half. The Coogs drove 75 yards on 14 plays to take a 21-14 lead.
But the Eagles re-tied the game at 21 on a 46-yard touchdown run by Ronnell Sims just 36 seconds later — and it remained tied 21-21 at the break.

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