Monthly Archives: November 2008

Rockwall-Heath to play Sulphur Springs in Region II Final next weekend

Sulphur Springs (11-2) easily defeated previously undefeated Dennison (12-1), 42-21, last night at Texas Stadium in the second Division II Region II semi-final game, earning the right to play undefeated Rockwall-Heath next weekend in the Region II Final.

The game will be played this Friday, Dec. 5, at 7:30 pm, at Texas Stadium, it was announced last night.

Sulphur Springs quarterback Tyrik Rollison threw three touchdown passes and ran for another score to lead his team to victory.

Rollison completed 21-of-26 passes for 301 yards in three quarters of work and Shane McQueen caught a pair of touchdowns in the first quarter.

Ryan Young ran for 149 yards and two touchdowns on 17 carries for Sulphur Springs.

Jordan Taylor had two touchdown runs and D.J. Jones finished with 134 yards and a touchdown on 20 carries for Denison (12-1).

For more local sports news, visit the Sports page at

Rockwall-Heath advances in playoffs, stops Ennis, 17-14

In what was expected to be a high scoring shootout between two teams that have averaged over 40 points a game, Rockwall-Heath’s defense forced eight Ennis turnovers, defensive back Darius Jones intercepted two passes plus recovered a fumble, and the undefeated Hawks squeaked by the Lions, 17-14, in a  Class 4A Division II Region II semi-final game played today at Texas Stadium.

Hawks senior running back Kendial Lawrence injured his right shoulder during the first half and saw limited playing time in the second half, but still rushed for 114 yards on 19 carries, scoring one touchdown on a five-yard run up the middle in the second quarter.

He returned during the fourth quarter and rushed several times, although he did appear to favor his shoulder.

But backup junior running back Jesse Irokwe broke loose for two long runs of 36 and 34 yards in the third quarter, to set up Everitt Gilbert’s game-winning TD on a 5-yard run around left end.

Irokwe rushed for 92 yards on just eight carries and made a huge difference, substituting for Lawrence. Gilbert rushed for 49 yards on 15 carries.

Reliable Hawks kicker Brad Howes kicked two PATs, plus a 29-yard field goal in the first quarter, which turned out to be the difference in points.

The Hawks led at halftime 10-7, but couldn’t quite get its offense into high gear, but the story of the day was the Hawks defense.

Time and time again the defense stopped the high-powered Ennis offense by causing five and recovering four fumbles, intercepting four passes and batting down several more passes.

The first four times that Ennis had the ball, they marched down the field only to lose the ball to fumbles which Heath recovered.

On their fifth drive, the Hawks’ Jones intercepted in the end zone.

Heath’s mighty defense also put up a terrific goal line stand in the third quarter, stopping Ennis four times at the one-yard line.

In the fourth quarter, Ennis had two sustained drives going, but neither resulted in points because Hawk defenders intercepted Lion’s star quarterback B.J. Betik each time.

Although Betik injured his shoulder briefly in the second quarter, he returned to complete 20 of 36 passes for 266 yards, including nine to the Area’s leading receiver, Kyle Guinyard, for 92 yards.

But on fourth and four near the Hawk’s 40-yard line, with 20-seconds left in the game, Betig launched his last pass of the game, which Jones intercepted, stepping in front of Guinyard.

Heath then ran one play, running out the clock, when quarterback Drew Hollingshead took a knee.

Next week, in its first year in the playoffs, Rockwall-Heath will play in the  Class 4A Division II Region II final against the winner of the Dennison (12-0) -Sulphur Springs (10-2) game, being played tonight.

We’ll post the score of that game tomorrow.

Royse City girls basketball team loses first game, then wins three more

After winning their first two games of the season, the Royse City girls basketball team lost their first game of the season Nov. 18 at Frisco Centennial, 63-55, but then recorded three more straight wins at the Carrollton R.L. Turner Classic last week.

In three straight nights they defeated Garland 59-56; El Paso Chapin, 40-39; and Arlington, 48-33.

The Lady Dogs are now 5-1 for the season.

Raven Alexander has been the leading scorer in five of the six games.

Games during Thanksgiving week are at home Nov. 24 vs. Dallas Christian and Nov. 25 vs. Sulphur Springs.

For more local sports coverage, visit the Sports page at

Former Dallas County prosecutor Kenda Culpepper sworn in as Rockwall County’s new District Attorney


Kenda Culpepper

(Click on photo to enlarge; double click if too large)

Rockwall County finally has a DA who’s not in trouble with the law.

Elected by Rockwall County voters Nov. 5, former Dallas County prosecutor and criminal attorney Kenda Culpepper was sworn in this morning as Rockwall County’s new District Attorney by Rockwall County resident and Justice Carolyn Wright, of the Texas Fifth District Court of Appeals, at the Rockwall County Courthouse.

After being sworn in to “preserve, protect and defend the Constitution,” Culpepper thanked the 60-70 family members, friends, judges and attorneys who filled the courtroom for coming to witness the ceremony, and pledged to be a “faithful steward.”

She also praised and thanked her newly-inherited staff of assistant district attorneys, investigators and staff members – especially First Assistant Craig Stoddart – whom she said have been working “under tremendous stress” and “incredibly difficult circumstances.”

Stoddart has supervised the workload at the DA’s office since last June when former, long-term District Attorney Ray Sumrow was convicted and sentenced to prison for 15 years for theft as a public servant.

Culpepper added that, while she doesn’t expect any major changes, what they do will be “transparent” to the entire community. more

Rockwall HCA dominates Bulverde Bracken Christian School, 56-8, in 6-man playoffs

By Jeff Mateer          


Rockwall’s Heritage Christian Academy overcame an early 8-0 deficit to score 56 unanswered points as it advanced to the TAPPS 6-Man Division I Semi-Finals, defeating Bulverde Bracken Christian School, 56-8. 


With the victory, HCA captured its fourth straight Regional title. 


HCA was led by senior running back Josh Points, who rushed 16 times for 222 yards and 4 touchdowns, including runs of 14, 60, 58 and 26 yards.  


Senior quarterback Zach Read ran 17 yards for a touchdown and returned an interception 44 yards for a touchdown in HCA’s victory.  


Senior fullback Kevin Prater scored a touchdown on a 5 yard run. 


Sophomore kicker Aaron rounded out the scoring for HCA with 5 extra point conversions and a 24-yard field goal.  


Defensively, HCA limited BCS to just 4 first downs and 141 yards of total offense.


HCA (10-2) will play Temple’s Central Texas Christian (7-5) on Saturday, Nov. 29, at  2 pm, at Moody High School in Moody TX, in the Semi-Final contest. 


The winner will advance to the TAPPS 6-Man Division I State Championship game the next weekend against the winner of Greenville Christian School and Austin Hill Country Christian Academy.


For more local sports scores, stories and photos, visit the Sports page at

Young Rockwall woman leaves to serve in Bolivia for 18 months as full-time Spanish-speaking missionary

A young Rockwall woman, who grew up in Royse City, was the manager at Soulman’s Barbeque, and has been teaching preschoolers at Galaxy Ranch School in Rockwall, just left the area at the end of October to begin serving as a full-time Spanish-speaking missionary in Bolivia in South America for a year and a half for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.


Rachel Luna, 21 – whose 23-year-old brother Jake recently returned home from serving a similar two-year mission for the Church in Peru – has been called to serve in the Bolivia Santa Cruz Mission, one of the Church’s three missions in the Central South American country, bordered by Brazil, Argentina and Peru.


She received her assignment in a letter directly from the president of the rapidly-growing, Salt Lake City UT-based Christian Church, Thomas S. Monson, whom members revere as a prophet of God, similar to Old Testament prophets Abraham, Moses and Isaiah.


The daughter of Rockwall residents Joe and Becky Luna, formerly of Royse City, she will become one of over 50,000 missionaries voluntarily serving their Faith at their own and family’s expense in over 170 nations throughout the world.


Most are young men and women under the age of 25, who sacrifice 18-24 months of dating, fun, school and work to find and teach people about Jesus Christ, their Church’s beliefs, plus provide humanitarian services to those in need.


According to the newly-called missionary, she is extremely excited to go and doesn’t mind postponing her education to do it. more

12-0 Rockwall-Heath to play 11-1 Ennis in semifinal playoff game Nov. 28

Undefeated and number-one ranked Rockwall-Heath (12-0) will finally get a real test when they play perennial powerhouse and fifth-ranked Ennis (11-1) this Friday, Nov. 28, at Noon, at Texas Stadium, in a Class 4A Division 2 Region 2 semi-final match-up.

The location and time were just announced. 

The game should be a real shoot-out, since it will feature two offensive powerhouses, which have averaged nearly the same number of yards this season, over 400 yards per game.

However, whereas Rockwall-Heath is primarily a rushing team, Ennis prefers to pass.

Ennis coach is Sam Harrell, the father of former Ennis quarterback and now star Texas Tech quarterback Graham Harrell, who is currently a leading Heisman Trophy candidate after leading Tech to victories over Texas and Oklahoma State. 

Last Friday, the Hawks demolished 19th-ranked Dallas Hillcrest for the second time this season, 58-21, as running back Kendial Lawrence scored five touchdowns, while rushing for over 200 yards in just little more than two quarters of action. 

At least some sports writers now believe that Lawrence is arguably the best running back in Texas. The 5’9,” 177-lb. tailback has scored 50 touchdowns this season and rushed for over 2,500 yards, in ten regular season plus two playoff games.

He has scored five TDs and rushed for over 200 yards in each playoff game.

Wide receiver and running back Everitt Gilbert also rushed for over 200 yards and scored two touchdowns in the Hillcrest victory.

Ennis overpowered Kilgore, 48-21, as quarterback D. J. Betik completed 30 of 37 passes for 306 yards and four touchdowns.

Lions wide receiver Kyle Guinyard caught 19 passes for 210 yards and touchdowns of 38 and 8 yards. Deonte McDade caught 10 passes for 96 yards and touchdowns of 39 and 9 yards.

Whoever wins will play another tough team in early December in the finals.

The other semi-final game this Friday will match undefeated Dennison (12-0) vs. Sulphur Springs (9-3), Nov. 28 at 8 pm, at Texas Stadium.

Dennison beat Royse City last weekend, 41-24, behind running back D.J. Jones and quarterback Jordan Taylor. Royse City hung with Dennison much of the game but had four costly turnovers, and two fumbles were recovered and returned for TDs.

The winners of both games will meet each other the following weekend to battle for the Division 2 Region 2 championship.

For more local sports scores, stories and photos, visit

Royse City Council selects nine-person City Manager search committee

The Royse City City Council selected a nine-person search committe for a new City Manager at the Council’s meeting Nov. 18.

Members will include two current Council members, Clay Ellis and Gary Gregory; Interim City Manager Larry Lott and City Secretary Brenda Craft; RISD Superintendent Randy Hancock and local insurance agent Kari Hargrove; plus city residents Charles Hauk, Linda Pattison and Mellody East.

To select the three residents, the Council agreed to draw names and select the first three chosen.


Kendial Lawrence scores 5 more TDs as Rockwall-Heath destroys Hillcrest, 58-21, in playoff game

Kendial Lawrence rushed for 255 yards and five touchdowns and Everitt Gilbert rushed for 215 yards and two TDs to lead Rockwall-Heath to a 58-21 victory over Dallas Hillcrest late Friday night in Class 4A Division II playoff action at Texas Stadium.

Although the game was close throughout most of the first half, the Hawks (12-0) scored three touchdowns in the last six minutes of the second quarter to take a commanding 44-21 halftime lead.

Lawrence scored on runs of 10,12, 58, 1 and 64 yards. Gilbert scored on 47 and 7 yard runs.

The Hawks defense took over in the second half, holding Hillcrest (8-4) scoreless and limiting them to 128 yards total offense, after giving up 253 yards in the first half.

Hillcrest only managed 14 total yards rushing during the entire game.

Rockwall-Heath’s high-powered offense racked up a massive 626 yards total offense, including 484 yards rushing and 142 yards passing.

Quarterback Drew Hollingshead completed 12 of 14 passes, seven to Gilbert for 69 yards and two to Lawrence for 20 yards.

Placekicker Brad Howes also kicked a 19-yard field goal and converted 6 of 8 PATs.

Hillcrest quarterback Jake Sherrington threw for 347 yards and three touchdowns, completing 21 of 37 passes.

In other Area Class 4A games, HIghland Park overcame five lost fumbles and beat Dallas Kimball, 24-7; Dallas Carter ran over Richardson Pearce 62-28; Dennison crushed Lincoln 42-13; Everman beat Aledo, 24-7; Denton Guyer destroyed Arlington Sequin, 44-0; Denton Ryan overpowered Mansfield Timberview, 49-14; Ennis licked Kilgore, 48-21; and Longview clobbered Lancaster, 49-22.

For more sports scores, photos and stories, visit

Watch this Kendial Lawrence video as he runs through opposing defenses

Watch this Kendial Lawrence video as he runs through opposing defenses!

This video just appeared on YouTube, and if you’re a Kendial Lawrence, Rockwall-Heath or even just football fan, you’re sure to love it!

Although Kendial is not big (5’9″, 177), as you’ll see, he has a quick burst to get through the line and speeds into the secondary.

A senior, he still has not decided where he’s going to college, but has several BCS and Big 12 Conference schools recruiting him, including Missouri, Kansas and Iowa State.