By ROB LUDWIG / Special To The Corsicana Sun —
A coach’s dream team is one that is ripe with resiliency.
Cody Crill’s first team at Navarro College appears to be building that component into their psyche for 2015.
Quarterback Bivins Caraway was intercepted on the Bulldogs’ first series at Cisco on Saturday. Instead of sitting on the bench staring at his shoes and lamenting his first interception of the season, Caraway bounced back to throw four touchdown passes in a 59-21 victory over the Wranglers at Chesley Field.
After that interception, Caraway played brilliantly the next three periods before giving way to backup Devlin Isadore. The sophomore from Longview went 19 of 29 for 301 yards and four touchdowns as Navarro evened its season record at 1-1.
“(Caraway) was fine after the interception,” said Navarro Coach Cody Crill. “He got hit when he threw the ball after a breakdown in protection. But he got back up and played a pretty good game.”
Caraway led a 24-point onslaught in the first quarter, rushing for a 15-yard touchdowns and then fired touchdown passes of 7 yards to running back Marcus Anderson and 50 yards to receiver Calvin Jones. Kicker Patrick O’Brien added a 39-yard field goal for a 24-0 Navarro lead after on period.
Jones was brilliant catching the ball in the contest, nabbing five balls for 143 yards, including a 23-yard TD in the second period and another 50-yarder in the third period.
Navarro took a commanding 38-14 lead at the half as Josh Cleveland (12-63) added a 3-yard TD run in the second quarter.
A slew of reserves entered the game late in the third period, but that did not deter the Bulldogs. Backup quarterback Devlin Isadore hit Taylor Thompson with a 7-yard TD pass and third-string signal-caller Kenneth Arthur contributed a 4-yard score on the ground.
All that offense (531 yards, 30 first downs) is great, but it was another fine defensive effort that caught the attention of those in attendance.
Highly regarded Cisco quarterback Richard Lagow was hounded throughout the game, completing 17 of 30 for 198 yards with two interceptions. Cisco managed only 264 yards total offense, including minus-4 yards on 21 carries.
Linebacker JB Copeland led the crew of Navarro’s linebackers with 8 tackles and 3 quarterback hurries. Fellow backer Jake Blomstrom recorded 10 tackles, one tackle for loss and 3 hurries.
“We’ve got a bunch of kids who are not selfish on defense,” Crill said. “We also perhaps have a little smarter football players who stay in their gaps. If they are not in the right spot, you are going to get gashed.
“Our defense has responded well this season. They realize they cannot take off a play. Some might take off a play in the past and we’d pay for it. We cannot have that happen and so far this year they have stayed focused.”
Backup running back Marcus Anderson played a significant role after regular Kijana Amous was knocked out of the game after only one 13-yard carry. Anderson rushed for only 13 yards, but he was effective in the passing game with 3 catches for 55 yards and one touchdown. Cleveland added 3 catches for 37 yards out of the backfield.
Caraway’s backups played well in the final two periods. Isadore completed 5 of 7 passes for 41 yards and two scores. Arthur hooked up on both of his attempts for 69 yards.
SCORE BY QUARTERS
Navarro (1-1) 24 14 7 14 — 59
Cisco (0-1) 0 14 7 0 — 21
NC – Bivins Caraway, 15-run. (Patrick O’Brien kick) 10:30, 1Q
NC – Marcus Anderson, 7-pass from Bivins Caraway. (Patrick O’Brien kick) 5:55, 1Q
NC – Patrick O’Brien, 39-FG.
NC – Calvin Jones, Jr., 50-pass from Bivins Caraway. (Patrick O’Brien kick) 3:05, 1Q
CJC – Richard Lagow, 3-run. (Kick good) 13:25, 2Q
NC – Calvin Jones, Jr., 23-pass from Bivins Caraway. (Patrick O’Brien kick) 6:30, 2Q
CJC – Tyler Hogan, 9-pass from Richard Lagow. Kick good. 2:01, 2Q
NC – Josh Cleveland, 3-run. (Patrick O’Brien kick) 0:45, 2Q
NC – Calvin Jones, Jr., 60-pass from Bivins Caraway. (Patrick O’Brien kick) 10:20, 3Q
CJC – Crebbes, 2-run. (Kick good) 0:25, 3Q
NC – Taylor Thompson, 7-pass from Devlin Isadore. (Patrick O’Brien kick) 7:49, 4Q
NC – Kenneth Arthur, 4-run. (Patrick O’Brien kick) 3:34, 4Q
RUSHING: Navarro – Josh Cleveland 12-63-1; Marcus Anderson 5-13-0; Maurice Gordon 4-17-0; Bivins Caraway 1-15-1; Kijana Amous 1-13-0; Devlin Isadore 1-0-0; Kenneth Arthur 6-(-1)-1. Cisco – Crebbes 5-13-0; Elijah Bradley 4-6-0; Robert Lee 6-7-0; Richard Lagow 6-(-30)-1; Derek Esparza 1-0-0.
PASSING: Navarro – Bivins Caraway 19-29-301-4-1; Devlin Isadore 5-7-41-1-0; Kenneth Arthur 2-2-69-0-0. Cisco – Richard Lagow 17-30-198-2-2; Crebbes 8-22-70-1-0.
RECEIVING: Navarro – Tim Taylor 6-73-0; Calvin Jones, Jr., 5-143-3; Tyler Thompson 3-15-1; Marcus Anderson 3-55-1; Josh Cleveland 3-37-0; Del’Michael High 2-38-0; Dominique Harris 2-36-0; Warren Flye 1-39-0; Devin Smith 1-8-0. Cisco – Marcus Daggs 11-110; Tory Boozer 7-85-1; Robert Lee 2-8-0.
YARDSTICK NAVARRO CISCO
Points 59 21
Scores/Offensive Possessions 9-12 3-12
First Downs 30 16
By Rush 8 1
By Pass 16 11
By Penalty 6 4
Rushes/Yardage 30-120-3 21-(-4)-2
Passing Yardage 411 268
Total Offense 531 264
Return Yardage 102 191
Kickoffs 4-69-0 8-191-0
Punts 2-20-0 0-0-0
Interceptions 2-13-0 1-0-0
Fumbles 2-0-0 2-0-0
Total Yardage 633 455
Fumbles Lost 2-2 2-2
Punts/Average 1-27 3-42
Penalties/Yardage 14-125 8-92
Third-Down Conversions 4-10 5-14
OTHER SWJCFC SCORES: Tyler 71, TVCC 64; Kilgore 54, Arkansas Baptist 14; Blinn 38, Texas A&T 3; College of DuPage 33, NEO A&M 31.