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Insider: First look at Longview vs. Waco Midway

In Lobo Insider

Hayden Henry

By Hayden Henry
Dec. 12, 2017 at 5:47 p.m.
Updated Dec. 12, 2017 at 5:47 p.m.

Longview faces its next big challenge in the the state semifinals against undefeated Waco Midway.

Here's the first look at the third meeting overall between the Lobos and the Panthers:

D-I TALENT: Senior quarterback Tanner Mordecai, a 6-2, 213-pound, dual-threat quarterback, leads a number of Panthers with Division I offers. Mordecai is committed to Oklahoma, picking the Sooner of 18 programs, including Texas Tech, Oklahoma State, Baylor and Georgia.

He's protected by an offensive line that includes three FBS commits: OL Hakeem White (6-3, 281; Committed to Texas Tech; 4 offers), OL Kaitori Leveston (6-5, 290; Committed to Kansas State; 10 offers, including Texas, Arizona State and Texas Tech), OL Daizion Carroll (6-3, 215; Committed to North Texas; 1 offer) and TE David Preibe (6-6, 212; Committed to SMU; 6 offers, including Baylor, Houston and Missouri)

2018 WR Clayton Williams (6-1, 170) and 2019 RB James Fullbright (5-7, 185) are listed as prospects.

On defense, senior DL Jaxon Palmer (6-0, 285) is committed to Tulsa and holds 13 mid-major offers. 2018 LB Mason Young (6-2, 211) and 2019 CB Trevius Hodges (5-9, 167) are prospects.

TRUE DUAL THREAT: Mordecai enters with 4,866 total yards and has accounted for 58 touchdowns for the Panthers. He has a completion mark on the season of .601 and has is 64-of-81 for 1,005 yards, one interception and 11 touchdowns in the postseason. He passed for a season-low 191 yards against Carroll and has two 400-yard passing night on the season.

On the ground, Mordecai has four 100-yard games, including 114 rushing yards against SLC. He has 50 carries for 289 yards and 9 TDs in the postseason.

OTHER WEAPONS: Fullbright, who is averaging 7.3 yards per carry overall with 19 touchdowns on the season, had a season-high 29 carries against SLC, averaging 5.4 yards per carry. The junior has eight 100-yard games with a season high of 241 yards in the season opener against Cedar Park.

The Panthers have three players with at least 700 receiving yards, led by Williams, who is averaging 17.4 yards per catch with 19 touchdowns. Williams has caught at least six passes in nine games with a season-high of nine against Kileen. Junior Demarcus Degrate has 789 yards and 13 touchdowns on the season.

PLAYER IS, WELL, A PLAYER: The senior defensive tackle leads the Panthers with 22 of their 41 tackles for loss and has eight of Midway's 26 sacks and has three forced fumbles.

The Panthers have allowed 66 of their 293 points in the postseason.

THE SEASON: Midway went 10-0 on the regular season with wins over seven playoff teams. The Panthers beat Cedar Park, 35-28, and Temple, 40-28. Both of those teams were eliminated by Manvel in the third and fourth rounds, respectively. The Panthers controlled a 34-19 win over Cedar Ridge in Week 2 from the start. Cedar Ridge (13-1) meets Allen in the DI semifinals this week. The remaining four playoff teams were knocked out in the first round.

Overall, Midway's season opponents have a combined 96-69 record and the Panthers have an average margin of victory of 26 points.

In the postseason, the Panthers opened with wins over Grand Prairie (5-6) and Trophy Club Byron Nelson (5-7) before beating Mansfield, HC Jeff Hulme's former team, by 31 points. Mansfield finished with an 11-2 record. This past week, SLC rallied from a 21-0 hole before Midway took a 14-point win over the Dragons, who finished with a 10-4 record. After a home game in the bi-district, the Panthers beat Byron Nelson at AT&T Stadium before taking its next two wins close to home at Baylor's McLane Stadium.

Midway's playoff opponents have a combined 31-19 record. Longview's playoff opponents have a combined 36-12 record.

(Much more on Longview vs. Waco Midway coming this week in the News-Journal and online at



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