HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL

Cedar Park routs McCallum in opening round of playoffs

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Cedar Park's offensive barrage started early on Thursday night and never let up.

The Timberwolves were clicking on all levels on the offensive side of the ball and rolled to a businesslike 49-10 win over McCallum in the bi-district round of the playoffs at Gupton Stadium on Thursday.

"Pressure is only what you put on yourself," Cedar Park head coach Carl Abseck said. "If you practice and train that way, pressure shouldn't be an issue. Any team that's playing at this point is playing for their lives, and (McCallum) earned the right to be here too."

Cedar Park will face off against either Friendswood or Kingwood Park next Saturday at 6 p.m. at NRG Stadium in Houston in the area round of the playoffs.

Junior quarterback Ryder Hernandez finished 18-of-24 passing for 180 yards and four touchdowns and rushed for 64 yards. He set school records for completions and passing touchdowns in the win.

"Our O-Line was out there the entire night working their tails off, giving me a great pocket and a lot of time," Hernandez said. "Our receivers were making plays, and I was able to get the ball in their hands and let them do what they do best."

Josh Cameron caught four passes for 65 yards and a pair of touchdowns, and Gunnar Abseck had seven receptions for 62 yards. Sophomore Kevin Adams paced the rushing attack with 53 yards and a touchdown.

The Timberwolves scored on every possession they had other than the final possession of each half and didn't punt once.

"The first half, we only had the ball four times, and we scored all four times," Abseck said. "I enjoyed watching our kids come out in the second half and finish. It was a fun offensive night. You can't be much happier than that."

Cameron caught a 24-yard pass from Hernandez on the Timberwolves' first drive of the game, and found the end zone again on their next drive, answering the Knights' first touchdown of the night.

Adams and Jonathan Stockwell scored on the ground in the second quarter for Cedar Park, and McCallum settled for a 30-yard field goal just before the half.

Brock Johnson and Majeston Haverda caught touchdowns from Hernandez in the second half before the backups came in, and Cade Haught rushed for a seven-yard touchdown to finish off the rout.

The Timberwolves have won double-digit games in nine of the last 10 seasons thanks to Thursday's win, and their winning streak this season is up to 10 in a row.

Next week will be a new experience for Hernandez and this group of Timberwolves, who have never played at NRG Stadium. Friendswood, the runner up from District 10-5A, hosts Kingwood Park, the No. 3 seed from District 9-5A, on Friday night.

"We worked on staying focused and keeping up the energy," Hernandez said. "We're going to face some really good teams the rest of the way, so we're going to stay focused, keep up the hard work and go as long as we can."

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