Freshmen Phenoms

Freshmen lead the way for Class 6A playoff programs; predictions

Friendswood freshman Luke Grden. Vype

Originally appeared on Vype.com.

Ready for a Playoff Fun Fact?

Of the 10 Houston-area programs remaining in the Class 6A postseason, three have freshman starters at quarterback.

What?

Yes, North Shore, Katy and Friendswood put the ball in the hands of athletes who can’t even drive a car yet.

Mustang Dematrius Davis took over after midseason and looks the part with his feet and arm. The east Houston star already has an offer from Baylor. Katy’s Bronson McClelland does more than just hand off the ball to Deondrick Glass and Josh Ogelsby. He is well-trained and has a big future. Friendswood’s Luke Grden is 14-years-old and has a live arm. He’s the future of Mustang football.

But that just seems a little nerve-racking for Jon Kay, Gary Joseph and Robert Koopman, who play their best available player.

It’s the regional semis, folks. Let’s get ready for a wild weekend of big-boy Houston-area football.

Here are the predictions.

CLASS 6A

REGION III

DI

Katy vs Atascocita, NRG Stadium, Friday at 7 pm

I know, I know. Atascocita was 3-0 at NRG Stadium last year making their run to the state Final Four. Take it easy Eagle fans. The Katy D is giving up like a touchdown a game. Unless that defense can hold down two of the top RBs in the state, Katy does their thing. Eagle QB Jack Roe has over 2,900 yards from scrimmage, but Katy eats QBs for brunch.

Katy by 14

Lamar vs North Shore, Friday at 7 pm

This is a complete battle of Houston heavyweights. North Shore is a few years away from being dominant again and Lamar is experienced with tons of DI talent. So this is a battle of the young stars of North Shore and the College Ballers at Lamar. Lamar makes plays on special teams, offense and defense. The 'Shore' is relying on a freshman QB Dematrius Davis.

Lamar by 4

CLASS 6A

REGION III

DII

Cy-Fair vs Friendswood, TDECU Stadium, Friday, 7 pm

Trenton Kennedy has rushed for over 1,418 for Cy-Fair, who will out-physical the Mustangs. Friendswood's 14-year-old QB is legit for the future, however. Bobcats defense is too tough.

Cy-Fair by 14

Langham Creek vs Kingwood, TDECU Stadium, Saturday, Noon

The Lobos are so explosive with QB Herron, Mehn at RB and Eke at WR. If the defense gets a few stops, Langham stampedes past Kingwood.

Langham Creek by 17

Region II

Longview vs Klein Collins, McLane Stadium, Saturday at 2 pm

This will be Klein Collins’ toughest test of the year. Longview is no joke and very balanced on offense. They have only one loss and beat Rockwall, who beat The Woodlands and took Sasche to the wire. Longview is legit. Klein Collins is as well with their heavy set backfield with Spiller (OU-commit) and Powell. Rhyne is gritty at QB. The defense could be the best in H-Town.

Tigers by 1

Lufkin vs Westfield, Texan Drive, Saturday at 1 pm

Lufkin’s offense has NOT seen anything like the Westfield defense. Mustang QB Gipson is a true dual-threat and has recently received a DI offer from Memphis as a junior. He’s dialed in.

Westfield by 17

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McCullers Jr. out-pitched friend and former teammate Dallas Keuchel on Father's Day. Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

With three impressive wins to start this series against the once AL-leading Chicago White Sox, Houston tried to extend their winning streak to seven games and finish a four-game sweep on Father's Day. Thanks to a big inning against former-Astro Dallas Keuchel, they would win to keep their hot streak going.

Final Score: Astros 8, White Sox 2

Astros' Record: 43-28, first in the AL West

Winning Pitcher: Lance McCullers Jr. (4-1)

Losing Pitcher: Dallas Keuchel (6-2)

Rough return to Houston for Keuchel

In his first game against his old squad, Dallas Keuchel would not have a memorable start on the mound for Chicago. Houston made him labor in the first inning, loading the bases though they only came away with one run on an RBI single by Abraham Toro, grabbing the early 1-0 lead. After going down 1-2-3 in the second, they got after Keuchel again in the third.

They ended up batting around against him that inning, including a two-RBI single by Yordan Alvarez, RBI double by Taylor Jones, and bases-loaded RBI-walk by Jose Altuve, which would end Keuchel's day very early and leave the bases juiced. Chicago's bullpen would walk another batter to give Keuchel another earned run, making it a 6-2 game, with all six going against the former Houston ace. Carlos Correa extended the lead to five runs in the next inning, hitting a leadoff solo home run to make it 7-2.

McCullers Jr. gives up two over six

That gave Lance McCullers Jr. a nice lead to work with, and he managed it well. He had one big mistake in the early goings of the game, giving up a one-out single in the second to set up a two-run home run, which at the time put Chicago in front 2-1 before Houston's offense came alive. He followed that up with four scoreless innings, erasing a walk in each with some tremendous defense behind him—his final line: 6.0 IP, 2 H, 2 ER, 4 BB, 4 K, 1 HR, 94 P.

Astros complete the sweep to jump on top of the standings

Still a six-run game in the top of the seventh, Blake Taylor entered as the first reliever out of Houston's bullpen, tossing a 1-2-3 frame. He continued in the top of the eighth, getting two strikeouts in another scoreless inning. The 8-2 score would go final as Ralph Garza Jr. would enter as the third pitcher of the day to wrap things up with a scoreless top of the ninth to finish the four-game sweep. The win, their seventh straight, paired with an Oakland loss earlier in the afternoon, moves Houston into the top spot in the AL West based on winning percentage.

Up Next: This long stretch of consecutive games continues on Monday in Baltimore, as the Astros pick up a seven-game road trip starting with a three-game set against Baltimore getting underway at 6:05 PM Central. Jake Odorizzi (1-3, 5.68 ERA) will get the start for Houston, going opposite of Keegan Akin (0-2, 5.76 ERA) for the Orioles.

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