HALTOM CITY — Jacob Gnacinski rushed for 139 yards and three touchdowns and threw for 159 yards and another score to lead Keller Fossil Ridge past Haltom 40-6 in a District 4-5A game Friday at Birdville Stadium.
The Panthers (6-2, 4-1), who had 390 yards of offense, started slowly in the first half but picked up the pace in the second. The normally pass-happy offense used its running game to set the tone, rushing 30 times for 230 yards.
Haltom (3-5, 1-4), which was all but eliminated from playoff contention, managed just 58 yards in the second half. Dandre Reed led the way with 87 yards on 13 carries.
The Buffalos hurt themselves in the first half with two fumbles and a fake punt that failed as they fell behind by 14 and couldn’t recover.
Fossil Ridge turned those three miscues into 10 points and then dominated in the second half.
Gnacinski hit Ryan Parker on a 57-yard pass just 49 seconds into the second half and then one series later Keshawn Mitchell scored from the 1 to make it 34-6. The Panthers scored their last touchdown on Gnacinski’s 7-yard run with 10:22 to play in the game.
Haltom, which outgained the Panthers in the first half 176-155, scored first on a 2-yard run by Jonathan Armstrong. His run capped a 10-play drive that covered 83 yards. Fossil Ridge answered right back, taking just 31 seconds to take a 7-6 lead when Gnacinski went in from the 2.
The Panthers would increase the lead to 10-6 when Cody Seidel kicked a 26-yard field goal following a Haltom fumble. They had a first-and-goal at the 7, but a loss of two followed by two incomplete passes forced the field goal. He added a 30-yarder on the next possession to push the lead to 13-6 with 9:01 left in the half.
Special to the S-T
Jacob Gnacinski ran for 139 yards and passed for another 159 in Fossil Ridge’s past 40-6 victory over Haltom.
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