High School Sports

Special teams, defense spark Trophy Club Nelson over Fossil Ridge

Josh Johnson returned a blocked field-goal attempt 99 yards for a touchdown and added an interception in the second half as Trophy Club Nelson beat Keller Fossil Ridge 27-13 Friday night at Northwest ISD Stadium.

The game didn’t affect playoff outcomes for either team. Fossil Ridge (7-3 overall, 4-3 District 5-6A) was already guaranteed the district’s second seed in Division II. The Panthers will play either McKinney Boyd or Plano at 5 p.m. Friday at AT&T Stadium in Arlington.

“I didn’t have them ready to play,” Fossil Ridge coach Tony Baccarini said. “We found out [Friday] morning, point-wise, we were in. You can’t lie and tell them any different.”

Nelson (3-7, 2-5) was eliminated before Friday’s game.

The Bobcats capped their first season in the state’s highest classification with a win behind strong performances on defense and special teams.

Fossil Ridge scored on its first possession, a 4-yard run from Keshawn Mitchell, but the Panthers struggled to get going the rest of the game.

After Nelson stuffed Mitchell on fourth-and-goal from the 1, quarterback Preston Haire and running back Courtney Miles keyed a 99-yard drive. The game was tied by Haire’s 20-yard touchdown pass to Chase Flickinger in the corner of the end zone.

Ridge lined up for a 40-yard field goal attempt at the end of the half. But the ball was tipped at the line, and then caught by Johnson at his own 1. Johnson, a defensive back who returns punts for Nelson, raced around the right side of Ridge’s scrambling field goal team and up the sideline for the long touchdown to end the half.

Related stories from Fort Worth Star Telegram