For the first time since 2011, the Decatur Eagles are in the playoffs and seeking their first postseason win since 2005.
A 56-53 win over Sanger Friday clinched the first seed in Division I out of District 9-3A.
“We’ve met one of our goals and it feels great to have a chance to compete for a state championship,” Decatur head coach Kyle Story said. “We’ve come a long way since we played Trinity Christian in August.
“I’m proud of their effort and the work they’ve put in throughout the year.”
Decatur’s win dropped Sanger to the second seed. Neither team made the playoffs last season.
District champion and undefeated Gainesville is the first seed in Division II and Krum captured the final spot in the postseason.
Decatur (7-3, 3-1) takes on the Ranchview Wolves (4-5) Friday at Lake Dallas. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m.
Ranchview topped Aubrey 46-22 to secure their spot in the playoffs and move to Division I along with Frisco Lone Star. It was their only league win of the season. The Wolves got outscored by a 148-43 margin in their other three district contests.
Since Ranchview defeated Aubrey by more than nine points, Argyle moved back down to Division II along with Celina.
Story views the Sanger win as a learning tool.
“It’s nice to pull that one out,” he said. “There are several things we can still improve on.”
After a horrid start left the Eagles in a 17-0 hole early, they responded with 49 points in the final three quarters.
“We just came out a little rusty after the bye week,” Story said. “As the game went on, we got back into the groove of playing.”
Eagle quarterback Grayson Muehlstein made the most of that groove, putting up 508 all-purpose yards. Cain Lowe hauled in six touchdown passes and had 234 yards receiving.
“They had an outstanding night,” Story said. “Grayson kept the ball away from defenders and was accurate all night. Cain had big runs after the catch and did a nice job making moves down field.”
The Eagles hope to keep the offense rolling against Ranchview. The Wolves are led by Oklahoma commit Brandon Glenn on the defensive line.
“He’s a force up front,” Story said. “We’ve got to know where he is and make sure he gets blocked.”
Offensively the Wolves like to get the ball in space to Raghib Ismail. The son of former Cowboy Raghib “Rocket” Ismail can make a lot things happen with the ball in his hands.
“They’ll run out of the spread and have a lot of quickness,” Story said. “We have to contain their speed.”
DECATUR (7-3, 3-1) VS. RANCHVIEW (6-3, 2-1)
7:30 p.m. at Falcon Stadium, Lake Dallas
Decatur: The Eagles are looking for their first postseason win since 2005.
Ranchview: The Wolves finished 2-8 last season.
Harris line: Decatur by 11