It was all Bulldogs in the first half of Friday night's area game in Waco against Kennedale. With temperatures hovering just above freezing and rain coming down the Dawgs used a solid run defense and fluid offense to take a 35-8 lead at the break.
After holding the Wildcats three and out on the game's opening drive Burnet rolled off a seven plays to drive to the Kennedale 15 yard line. A holding call eventually backed the Dawgs up to the 32-yard line where they were faced with a fourth down. On fourth and 23 from the 27 Derek Kiser dropped back and found Trenton Hafley who trotted in for the games first score. After the Alex Melvin PAT Burnet led, 7-0.
Kennedale drove to the Burnet 35 on their next attempt but the defense once again flexed their muscles, this time with a great interception by Tyler Krause. Eight plays later Burnet returned to the zone with a Hafley 10-yard run. Melvin's PAT made it 14-0 with .36 seconds left in the first.
Just four minutes later the Bulldogs increased their lead to 21-0 with a Hafley 6-yard run and Melvin kick. The drive was led by Hafley who toted the ball on all five snaps.
Kennedale put their first points on the board with 9:12 left in the half on a three-play 65-yard drive. They also cashed in a two-point conversion to make it 21-8.
The Dawgs found themselves in another fourth down situation on the next drive facing a fourth and goal from the nine-yard line. Once again Kiser was cool scanning the field and found Brock Foster in the end zone to put Burnet on top 28-8 after Melvinís kick with 7:22 left in the half.
Burnetís next big play came on defense as Chase Mardis sacked the Wildcat QB on a fourth down attempt for a 17-yard loss giving Burnet possession in Kennedale territory.
Two plays later an 11-yard screen pass to Joel Johnson resulted in a Bulldog touchdown. Melvin added the point after making it 35-8 just before the break.
Following a Burnet turnover Kennedale scored on their first possession of the second half. It was a 10-yard run that added the points and after the kick the board read, 35-15.
After a balance Burnet drive Hafley took the honors of cashing in his fourth touchdown of the night, this one from two-yard out out of the Wild Dawg formation. The point after was blocked leaving the score, 41-15 with 4:11 left in the third.
Hafley added his fifth and sixth touchdowns of the game in the fourth quarter which pushed Burnetís points total to 55. The Wildcats scored on the very last play of the third and again on the very last play of the game which made the final, 55-35.
Burnetís Area win will have them facing either Abilene Wylie or Lubbock Cooper in the regional round next week. Itís the first time the Bulldogs had a Thanksgiving week football game since the 2003 season. Wylie and Cooper will play on Saturday afternoon. The Bulldogs will have to wait until then to see where the playoff road will lead them next week.
Pick-up Wednesdayís Burnet Bulletin for a complete game recap as well as regional playoff information.