ALLEN, TX — The Southlake Carroll Dragons took on the DeSoto Eagles in the Division II State Semifinal on Saturday, December 9, at Eagle Stadium in Allen. Both teams battled back and forth throughout the contest before DeSoto’s defense finally held off the Dragons in the end. DeSoto advanced to the 2023 State Championship 45-38.
After trading scores throughout the first half, DeSoto took the lead into halftime, 21-20, after the Dragons bobbled the snap on a punt in the 2nd quarter. Southlake Carroll battled back in the second half and even took a 3-point lead near the end of the 3rd quarter. However, DeSoto had an answer time and time again, scoring when it mattered most. The Eagles led at the start of the 4th quarter 35-31.
DeSoto opened up the scoring in the 4th quarter on a quick strike from DJ Bailey to Antonio Pride Jr. to put the Eagles up 42-31. Southlake Carroll attempted to respond, but the Eagles picked off the Dragons on the ensuing possession. A quick field goal put DeSoto up 45-31 with time winding down in the 4th quarter.
Southlake Carroll fought until the bitter end. The Dragons drove down and scored with less than two minutes remaining to pull within seven points. Unfortunately for the Dragons, DeSoto recovered the onside kick. All hope wasn’t lost, however, as Southlake could get the ball back with a stop on defense. It took until 3rd down, but DeSoto managed to power through for a first down, and Southlake Carroll was out of timeouts. The Eagles kneeled out the remaining time and claimed the State Semifinal Championship 45-38.
DeSoto advanced to the State Championship game in Arlington on December 16 with the win over Southlake Carroll. The Eagles face off with Summer Creek next Saturday. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.