In a winner-take-all matchup with the District Championship on the line, the Prosper football team dominated from start to finish in a 49-7 win over Lake Dallas on homecoming night, Nov. 10.
Prosper (8-2, 6-1) has now finished with the best record in District 14-5A for the second consecutive season. It’s the best overall regular season record for the Eagle football program since 2013.
“Since last December, we’ve been working for this,” head coach Brandon Schmidt said to his team after the game. “We’re not done yet.”
The Eagles came out firing on all cylinders, attacking Lake Dallas (6-4, 5-2) on both offense and defense. Facing an offense that averaged more than 38 points per game in district play heading in, Prosper held the Falcons to 60 yards in the first half and kept them off the scoreboard the entire game. The only score for Lake Dallas came on an interception return in the fourth quarter.
Opposing quarterback Ryan Depperschmidt came into Friday’s action with 30 total touchdowns while completing 70 percent of his passes. Against Prosper, he had 11 completions on 18 attempts for just 115 yards. He was also sacked six times, two of which came from Prosper senior Sean Funches. Fellow senior Jevin Jackson added a sack of his own and said a week of hard work prepared the defense to be lights out up front.
“We were just trying to prove to ourselves that we’re the best defensive line in the district,” Jackson said. “We played like we had something to prove, and I think we did.”
Defensive coordinator Jason Johns pinpointed Lake Dallas’ ability to create big plays as an area of focus throughout the week. The longest play the Eagles allowed was a 34-yard pass in the first quarter.
In total, Prosper’s defense forced Lake Dallas to punt eight times. Five of those drives were three-and outs. The Eagles added two turnovers on forced fumbles and a fourth-down stop in the second half.
“Every position group stood up in the first half and made a big play. That’s what it should be,” Johns said. “When we started rotating guys in the second half, there was no letdown.”
Prosper enters the playoffs allowing only 13.6 points per game. Their lone shutout of the year came against Carrollton R.L. Turner, and the Eagles held opponents to seven points on four separate occasions.
“The most physical team wins,” senior linebacker Justin Benvie said. “You’ve just got to be a dog all night, every night.”
It was an all-around team effort for Prosper, and the offense was right up to par. Junior quarterback Keegan Shoemaker continued his string of quality performances, completing 15-of-19 passes for 182 yards and three touchdowns, all of which came in the first half. He made use of all his weapons in the receiving core — senior Devin Haskins caught five balls for 49 yards and two touchdowns, while DJ Love racked up 90 total yards and a score.
Prosper’s running game was just as stout. Kaleb Adams ran for more than 150 yards, averaged over nine yards per carry and found the end zone twice. Senior backup David Alvarez took over the backfield duties late in the third quarter and added two scores of his own.
The win avenged last year’s 28-24 loss to Lake Dallas to end the 2016 regular season. This time, the script was flipped, which bodes well for the Eagles moving forward.
Prosper will take their momentum into Allen Eagle Stadium in the Bi-District playoffs against Frisco Wakeland on Thursday, Nov. 16 at 7 p.m. It’s a classic rematch opportunity for Prosper, facing the same team that eliminated them in the first round of the playoffs in 2016. This time around, the Eagles have bigger goals in mind.
“We can go deep in the playoffs,” Shoemaker said. “We’re thinking state. That’s our goal.”