TYLER, Texas (KETK) – The eyes of Texas will be upon Arlington on Friday as the UIL state football championships for the small classifications conclude and East Texas will be the star of the show.
Three out of the four teams competing are from the Piney Woods, and whether they are looking to further cement their dynasty or are competing for their first-ever title, it will be a day the athletes never forget.
Gilmer (14-1) vs. Carthage (13-0)
A colossal matchup between two perennial programs will kick off the day at AT&T Stadium at noon. In a re-match from a non-district matchup, the Buckeyes and Bulldogs will face off for the 4A-Division II matchup.
The two squared off back on September 25 in Gilmer with the Bulldogs winning 42-14. It was Carthage’s first game in nearly a month after several COVID-19 cancelations.
Despite the seemingly large margin of victory, it tied for the most points that the Bulldogs allowed defensively all season.
Carthage will be playing for its 8th state championship in the past 13 years. They have won 29 consecutive games with their lass loss coming in the 2018 state semifinals.
For the Buckeyes, they will be looking for their first state title since 2014. Gilmer has won 10 straight games since falling to Carthage back in September and has been averaging 42 points a game.
Lindale (13-2) vs Argyle (15-0)
The Lindale Eagles come into the nightcap game already having by far the best season in school history.
The program had never advanced past the second round of the Texas high school football playoffs, but this year the Eagles fought their way to Arlington under fourth-year head coach Chris Cochran.
They are led by running back Jordan Jenkins, who just signed with Baylor on Wednesday. He has 3,000 yards rushing on the season and 50 touchdowns. Back in the area round, Jenkins put the team on his back, scoring nine times in a 70-56 win over Needville.
Lindale has won 11 consecutive games after blowing a 21-point halftime lead to Gilmer back on September 18.
They will face against the 4A powerhouse Argyle Eagles, who enter the game undefeated at 15-0. They have one state championship in their history, but this is their sixth appearance. Their defense will be looking to stop Jenkins in his tracks as they are giving up just 15 points per game. Lindale on offense has been averaging more than 42.
Argyle will have a much shorter drive to the stadium than Lindale fans. They come out of Denton County and the school is just 27 miles away from AT&T Stadium.
Kickoff for the 4A-Division I championship will be at 7 p.m.