SAN ANTONIO – Two of the top-ranked high school football teams in the state went head-to-head in a hard-hitting final game of the KSAT Pigskin Classic on Saturday night.
The Steele Knights defeated the Brennan Bears 35-34, on a touchdown pass from sophomore quarterback Chad Warner to sophomore Royal Capell with 18 seconds left on the clock.
“I was extremely proud of the way the team fought,” Steele Head Football Coach David Saenz said. “We’re just excited that it turned out the way it did.”
The late touchdown pass was the deciding score in a tight game that went down to the final possession.
Warner was named Jon Wayne Player of the Game, following the come-from-behind game-winning touchdown pass.
“It was a lot of fun,” Warner said. “I saw my guy across the middle, and I threw it, and he caught it and we won the game.”
The Knights jumped out early in the opening quarter, as senior running back Jaydon Bailey scored on two long touchdown runs. But the Bears showed their mettle and battled back, as star quarterback Ashton Dubose continued to make timely throws.
Dubose finished the game with 316 yards passing and five touchdowns, including a touchdown pass to junior Jason Love with 1:07 left to take a late 34-28 lead.
But it was ultimately Warner and Steele’s offense that got the final say.
Steele opened the third quarter with an emphasis on the running game, but a holding penalty pushed the Knights’ possession back. Two more runs got the team into the red zone where they threatened to score, but a fumble on a bad snap was recovered by Bears’ defensive back Javyn Dolton, ending the drive.
Brennan got aggressive on their possession following the turnover, as Dubose completed a long pass to Acevedo to change field position. Their up-tempo attack picked up the pace, quickly getting into scoring range.
Dubose found his twin brother Aaron with a 15-yard touchdown pass, giving the Bears their first lead of the game.
Steele however showed they weren’t going to go away quietly, as on their next possession Warner hit Connor Vincent with a big pass completion. Jaydon Bailey punched it in from three yards out to tie the game at 21-21. The score capped a six-play, 75-yard drive.
Following a punt by Brennan, Steele wide receiver Jalen Cooper caught a 69-yard touchdown pass from Warner to reclaim the lead.
Brennan then got a big defensive stop on 3rd and 22 with 6:24 to go, as linebacker Wakil Mateen forced a fumble on Warner, that the Bears ultimately recovered.
Dubose completed a 3-yard touchdown pass to Avron Carter to tie the game 28-28, with 5:04 left in the game. After a defensive stop, Brennan got the ball back with just under four minutes to play, setting up the excitement of the last few minutes.
When the Steele Knights faced off against Brennan Bears on Saturday, it was a battle of two of the top 6A teams from last season and two of the top 16 preseason picks in Texas this season.
The Bears are ranked No. 12 in the state in Dave Campbell’s Texas Football Magazine. The Knights are not far behind, at No. 16 out of the top 50 teams in the state. That’s after Brennan finished on top of 12′s Top 12 at 13-1 and Steele at No. 3 after their 11-1 year, with both teams going undefeated in district play.
“It’s an experience for our kids to see what it’s like to play on a big stage,” said Steele Head Football Coach David Saenz. “There are great stadiums in San Antonio, but there’s nothing like playing in the Alamodome.”
Steele: at home versus Lake Travis, Sept. 2 at 7:30 p.m.
Brennan: versus Brandeis, Sept. 2 at 7 p.m.
About the KSAT Pigskin Classic
The KSAT Pigskin Classic is the first of its kind in the Alamo City and kicks off the 2022 high school football season. The event showcased six local high school football teams over three games in a one-day event at the Alamodome.
You can find out more information by clicking here.