IOWA COLONY - Battling a gritty Fulshear squad along with a gusty crosswind inside AISD’s Freedom Field, the Manvel Mavericks’ initial bid to clinch a playoff spot fell just a tad short, Friday night.

Despite falling out of first place in the 10-5A Division I Football standings with a tough 9-7 loss to the Chargers and into a second place tie with Foster, though, the Mavs still earned a postseason berth a little later, thanks to Angleton winning at Magnolia West.

Manvel (6-3 overall, 5-2) next closes the regular season against Rosenberg Terry on the road at Traylor Stadium, Nov. 4 (7 p.m. kickoff), while their playoff seeding hinges on the outcome of the Fulshear-Foster showdown the evening before on Nov. 3.

The Mavs watched a pair of chances to take the upper hand go awry in the final three minutes. Fulshear’s Jacob Hoffart picked off a Kaeden Smith pass at the Chargers’ 15-yard line to thwart the initial attempt. After Manvel got the ball back, an illegal substitution then pushed Chase Cross’ initial 47-yard field goal attempt to 52 yards.

Cross’ valiant effort ultimately landed barely wide left of the uprights, though, as Manvel saw its five-game winning streak snapped.

While the Fulshear offense was able to move the ball effectively early on, the Mavs came up with back-to-back stops on downs inside their own 25-yard line on the Chargers’ first two series. Fulshear finally managed to find the end zone on their third possession, though, with quarterback Parker Williams scrambling in from 9 yards out with 5:19 left in the second quarter.

Manvel moved it to the Chargers’ eight-yard line in the first half’s closing moments, but Cross misfired on a 25-yard FG attempt following a poor center snap.

Kevin Hall’s squad came out of the dressing room following intermission and took their first lead of the contest, though, with Smith rambling 46 yards on a keeper  with 3:42 left in the third. Cross added the PAT for a 7-6 Manvel advantage.

Kavion Godley busted loose for a 65-yard scamper to put Fulshear in good shape at the Manvel 3 on their next possession. Chargers’ fullback Zane Smith was knocked loose of the ball at the one a few plays later with Jalen Charles picking it up for the Mavs and returning it to the 20.

However, Manvel immediately went three-and-out and the Chargers drove from the Manvel 41 to the eight-yard line to set up Joey Mahoney’s go-ahead 25-yard FG with 8:10 left in the contest.

AREA FOOTBALL ROUNDUP - Iowa Colony saw its playoff hopes come to a heartbreaking end with a 28-27 defeat to Bay City, Friday night at AISD Memorial Stadium.

The Pioneers (2-7 overall, 1-4 in 12-4A) close their inaugural season at Needville, Nov. 4 at 7 p.m.

With the Blackcats leadIing 14-0 late in the second quarter, Chris Johnson scooped a loose fumble and returned it six yards for a touchdown to bring Iowa Colony within 14-7 at intermission.

The Pioneers then struck for a pair of third period TD’s, as Jacody Miles exploded 83 yards to tie it and Camren Renfro’s 11-yard keeper gave Iowa Colony its first lead at 21-14 with 4:28 left in the period.

Ayden Smith went in from 2 yards out for Bay City to cut the margin to 21-20 with 9:20 remaining in the contest, while Renfro hit Jarvis Solomon with a 21-yard TD strike to increase Iowa Colony’s lead  to 27-20 with 6:13 remaining in the contest.

However, the Blackcats responded on the next series with Jada Andrews scoring on a 7-yard run and Smith adding the go-ahead two-point conversion run with 4:37 left.

Miles led the IC offense with 152 yards on the ground and one TD.

Playoff bound Shadow Creek moved a step closer to clinching the 23-6A crown with a 45-0 victory over Alief Taylor, Friday night at Crump Stadium.

The Sharks (9-0 overall, 6-0) also remained unbeaten in both non-district and district play with the shutout win as well.

Shadow Creek limited the Lions to 102 total yards and intercepted five passes. Pick-6 returns by Nick King (30 yards) Aiden Benjamin (20 yards) gave Shadow Creek a quick 14-0 lead in the first quarter. Senior signal caller Duke Butler also returned to action for the first time in two months, throwing scoring passes to Jacorey Watson (6 yards) and Joshua Best (8 yards), while Watson added a 15-yard scoring strike to Christian Seriale and an 8-yard scoring run.

Shadow Creek can secure the district championship outright with a victory at home against Strake Jesuit, Nov. 4 at AISD Freedom Field at 7 p.m.

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