HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL

Big second half powers Lake Travis past San Antonio O'Connor

The Cavaliers will face Katy Saturday in the state semifinals

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SAN ANTONIO — Garrett Wilson can’t help but make it look easy. 

The junior receiver caught two touchdowns and ran for another while played lockdown defense as a defensive back to help Lake Travis beat San Antonio O’Connor 38-17 in the regional finals Saturday afternoon at the Alamodome. 

“I’m just doing what I do and try to do the best for my teammates,” Wilson said. 

Wilson scored his first touchdown just before halftime to give Lake Travis a one-score lead. Senior quarterback Matthew Baldwin found him for a 31-yard touchdown on the first drive of the second half and he ran for a nine-yard score in the fourth quarter. 

He finished with seven catches for 95 yards through the air and 10 yards on the ground. He had a long touchdown pass called back on Lake Travis holding penalty. 

Baldwin went 21 of 27 for 192 yards and a pair of touchdowns and ran for 21 yards and a touchdown. 

“That’s the best collection of defensive backs we’ve played all year long and they did some things to stop us from getting the ball to (Wilson),” Lake Travis head coach Hank Carter said. “Matthew to Garrett is pretty tough to stop. Matthew is a great player and he’s only getting better.”

Kyle Wakefield carried the ball 20 times for 107 yards for the Cavaliers. Nathan Parodi had an interception and Brayden Roeder returned a fumble 30 yards late in the fourth quarter. 

O’Connor hadn’t been held to fewer than 27 points in any game this season and came into Saturday averaging nearly 45 points per game. Quarterback Roel Sanchez ran for 116 yards and two touchdowns and Trey Patterson had 70 yards. The two combined to run the ball 41 times. 

“There were a lot of momentum shifts throughout the game,” Parodi said. “We made some big plays and drove down the field. We knew what they liked to do. We made some adjustments at halftime and it ended up working out for us.”

Baldwin opened the scoring, taking a quarterback option three yards for a touchdown on the first drive of the game. The Panthers responded with a field goal and touchdown following a Lake Travis fumble to take a 10-7 lead. 

Cameron Dicker made a 20-yard field goal and Wilson scored to give Lake Travis the halftime lead. 

The teams traded scores in the second half. The Cavaliers converted a fourth down and Wilson wasn’t touched as he sprinted nine yards off the right tackle with seven minutes left in the game. 

“In the first half, we dropped a couple of balls and made the mistake with the turnover. I’m proud of how we responded in the second half. But we’re moving on to the final four. I’m excited about the way we’re playing.”

Lake Travis will face off with Katy Saturday at 3 p.m. at Alamo Stadium in San Antonio. The last time the two teams met, the Tigers beat the Cavaliers in the 2015 state title game. 

A handful of the seniors on the team this year were on the varsity roster that year. And since then, the Cavaliers are 27-3 and won their sixth state title. 

“This year is special because last year, we were a big name and everybody was talking about Lake Travis,” Parodi said. “This year, I think everybody doubted us. We lost all of our seniors and everyone didn’t think we’d make it this far. Now we’ve got a shot at state.”

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