Staff writer Hayden Henry takes a by-the-numbers look at Longview’s 49-14 win over Mesquite on Friday night at Hanby Stadium in Mesquite:
■ 19: Stops behind the line of scrimmage for the Lobo defense, who finished with 10 tackles for loss and nine sacks against the Skeeters. Malik Cannon had four TFLs and Drew Beltran two. Sawyer Goram-Welch and Joe Jones finished with two apiece.
■ 143: Stops behind the line of scrimmage in the regular season — 108 TFLs and 35 sacks. Beltran has 20 TFLs and nine sacks this season.
■ 85: Points allowed this season from the Lobo defense with 29 shutout quarters.
■ 431: Points for the Lobos this season, including three defensive touchdowns and one kickoff return touchdown.
■ 733: Rushing yards allowed this season for a 2.4 yards per carry average.
■ 2,925: Rushing yards for the Lobo offense for an 8.3 yards per carry average.
■ 9.2: Yards per carry this season for junior running back Kaden Meredith, who has 1,320 yards and 18 touchdowns. Meredith had three scores against Mesquite, the fifth game of the season with at least two touchdowns and seventh of his career.
■ 5: Previous meetings between Longview and Temple with the Lobos holding a 3-2 series lead, including a 24-3 win in the first round in 2001. Temple won the previous meeting, 28-7, in 1993 in the area round.
HE SAID IT
Overall on 10-0: "To get to this point, it's tough to do with our non-district schedule and then in 11-6A. I thought our district was better from top to bottom than it was last year. We'll find out more about that in the playoffs when we match up with other districts. Nothing was given to this team, I've said it a few times. There was a tremendous amount of work, more than more with realize, to get to this point and now we have a chance in the postseason. All the records are thrown out the window. It's time to find a way to go 1-0 each week."
On the defense: "There is no question that our defense has been the driving force behind our success. They played quite well all year long. They've been stingy. They've had takeaways. They've had big stops with their backs against the wall and have stood tall. They play so well together and feed off one another."
On the offense: "Offensively, we had moments. We've done a lot better of establishing an identity and solidified that. Everyone is wanting to compare it to last year's offense and we're not. Just like this defense is not like last year's defense. To sit here and say that you've had a quote "bad year of offense" when you've averaged 43 points a game is asinine, in my opinion. We didn't have the explosiveness early on this season but we've found our identity, found what our strengths are. We're going to play team football here where one unit helps the other and that's happened throughout the course of the season and play to the strengths of our team."
One word on Temple: "Loaded" -- Longview head coach John King