Ryan players and coaches didn’t make a big deal about it at the time, but the reality is that they went into last week’s bye with a bad taste in their mouths. That’s because despite shutting out Keller Fossil Ridge in Week 2, the offense struggled in that win and didn’t score at all in the second half.
That frustration, coupled with an insatiable itch to get back on the field after a week off, was obvious Friday night.
The Raiders, the No. 2 team in Class 5A Division I, piled up 565 yards and raced out to a 49-point halftime lead to obliterate West Mesquite 63-7 at C.H. Collins Athletic Complex. Seth Henigan completed all but two of his pass attempts for 240 yards and five touchdowns, giving him 11 touchdowns and two interceptions in three games.
Emani Bailey rushed for 124 yards and two scores. Billy Bowman Jr. added 129 receiving yards and three touchdowns.
“Oh, yeah, it felt like forever since we played a game,” Ryan coach Dave Henigan said of the week off. “In particular, offensively because we didn’t come out of the Ridge game with a good taste in our mouth. We really focused on ourselves over the bye week and simplified things. I felt like we really executed.”
The Raiders (3-0) scored on six of their seven first-half possessions. In the middle of all that, they got a blocked punt return from senior Tra Smith that gave them a 14-0 lead less than four minutes into the game.
Bailey averaged 20.67 yards per carry while scoring on runs of 41 and 65 yards, respectively. Meanwhile, the combo of Henigan and Bowman torched the Wranglers’ secondary with touchdown throws of 24, 48, and 40, respectively.
“I felt like once I got the punt block that these guys would get turned up,” Smith said.
Meanwhile, West Mesquite managed a paltry 151 yards of offense, had one turnover, and didn’t get on the scoreboard until the fourth quarter. One of the bigger head-scratcher plays came early in the first quarter with Ryan already leading 14-0. Instead of punting from their own 32-yard line, the Wranglers went for it on fourth down and came up short.
With the short field, Henigan found Ja’Tavion Sanders two plays later for a 19-yard touchdown to extend his team’s lead to 21-0. West Mesquite (0-4) fumbled four plays into its ensuing possession, leading to a three-play scoring drive for Ryan.
Heading into its district opener on Friday, Ryan has outscored its first three opponents 139-13.
“It’s like we talked about with the kids all the time: You play who you play,” coach Henigan said. “We have to play up to our standards, and that’s what we did tonight. We scored on all but one of our possessions in the first half, and we scored on special teams again. It was a good win.”
Ryan 63, West Mesquite 7
DR — Billy Bowman Jr. 24 pass from Seth Henigan (Riley Nuzzo kick)
DR — Tra Smith 12 blocked punt return (Riley Nuzzo kick)
DR — Ja’Tavion Sanders 19 pass from Seth Henigan (Riley Nuzzo kick)
DR — Del’Shun Neal 52 pass from Seth Henigan (Riley Nuzzo kick)
DR — Emani Bailey 41 run (Riley Nuzzo kick)
DR — Emani Bailey 65 run (Riley Nuzzo kick)
DR — Billy Bowman Jr. 48 pass from Seth Henigan (Riley Nuzzo kick)
DR — Billy Bowman Jr. 40 pass from Seth Henigan (Riley Nuzzo kick)
DR — Aaron Dixon 69 pass from Martin Rodriguez (Riley Nuzzo kick)
WM — Ja’Kobe Walton 0 pass from Kevin Jennings (Austin Stout kick)
Rushing — DR: Emani Bailey 6-124, Devin Ramirez 11-81, Keori Hicks 6-48, Zach Oyer 2-21, Michael Ayeni 2-3, Martin Rodriguez 2--16, WM: D’Erian Mitchell 19-73, Kevin Jennings 10-21, Nicolas Walton 4-9, Ja’Kobe Walton 1--1, Briley Green 3--6.
Passing — DR: Seth Henigan 12-14-0-240, Martin Rodriguez 2-2-0-64, WM: Kevin Jennings 10-19-0-42, Briley Green 2-2-0-13.
Receiving — DR: Billy Bowman Jr. 5-129, Del’Shun Neal 4-80, Aaron Dixon 1-69, Ja’Tavion Sanders 1-19, Keori Hicks 1-9, Tra Smith 1-3, Josh Watts 1--5, WM: Ty Jordan 5-29, Joshua Little 1-12, D’Erian Mitchell 2-8, Cornelious Piper 1-5, Tajyrian Turner 1-4, Ja’Kobe Walton 1-0, Jesus Nino 1--3.