Argyle beats Fairfield for 3A Division II title

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

ARLINGTON, TX (AP) -- Ian Sadler scored four touchdowns, including the game winner, and made two special-teams plays to lead top-ranked Argyle to a 38-33 see-saw victory over No. 6 Fairfield in the Class 3A Division II championship game on Friday.

Sadler's last touchdown, a 3-yard run, came with 6:54 to play to put Argyle (16-0) ahead for good. The 80-yard drive included a pass-interference penalty against Fairfield in the end zone.

Fairfield (15-1) threatened in the closing minutes thanks to a 64-yard run by Larry Rose, the 3A offensive player of the year, to Argyle's 17-yard line but was stopped at the 9 with 1:14 to play.

Argyle won its first state football championship in three trips to the final. Fairfield played in its first state final, never previously advancing beyond the state quarterfinals.

Sadler gained 109 yards rushing, 73 yards receiving and 102 on two returns. He set up one touchdown by running a fake punt 42 yards to the Fairfield 4 on the first possession of the second half. Minutes later, he returned Fairfield's ensuing punt 65 yards, fielding it while running in the opposite direction, for a touchdown.

Fairfield outgained Argyle 505-253 in total offense paced by Rose's 260 yards rushing and two touchdowns. Fairfield went into the game having scored 860 points, already a 3A record, for an average of 57.3 per game. Its lowest previous output was 42.

Fairfield rallied from a 17-3 deficit early in the second quarter to score touchdowns on its last three possessions of the half to take a 24-17 lead at intermission. That included a 39-yard touchdown pass on the final play of the half from Jacob Gallegos to Alex Ward immediately after Ward threw a 34-yard option pass for a touchdown that was nullified by an illegal-shift penalty.

Argyle answered midway through the third quarter with two touchdowns thanks to Sadler's special-teams heroics to move back ahead 31-24.

Fairfield replied early in the fourth quarter with a safety — linebacker Jeremiah Simpson tackling Sadler in the end zone — and a 54-yard touchdown run by Rose to regain the lead at 33-31.

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