Takeaways from Day 2 of the 2022 7 on 7 State Tournament
Day two of the 2022 State 7-on-7 Tournament at College Station is in the books, and the Dave Campbell’s texas soccer the staff were there to witness all the action. Here’s what we thought of the action at Aggieland.
Greg Tepper, DCTF Editor
It’s important to remember that 7-on-7 is not the same as the 11-a-side game in the fall, and maybe that’s why it’s so unpredictable. All predictions for the Division I bracket were quickly and efficiently inserted into the nearest wood chipper once the opening whistle sounded. consider who is not in Saturday’s championship bracket, instead relegated to the consolation bracket: defending champion Hebron, defending runner-up Lake Travis, perennial powerhouse Austin Westlake, pre-tournament favorite Alvin Shadow Creek, among many others. And find out who’s throwing the party in the title bracket: Rio Grande Valley’s PSJA North, capital stars Austin Anderson, private school juggernaut Bellaire Episcopal. The action was fierce in the scorching College Station sun, and while it might not have turned out the way the pundits thought (ahem), it was certainly worth watching.
My MVP: Let me dive one last time into the Division III bracket, where Childress receiver/defensive back Lamont Nickleberry really jumped out for me. A two-way dynamo, he’s made his presence felt on both sides of the ball, and I can’t wait to see what he does when the fall arrives.
Ishmael Johnson, DCTF Deputy Editor
Maybe it should have been easy to see Hitchcock win Division II in retrospect. Sophomore quarterback Lloyd Jones III showed off arm strength and ball placement to stars Damien McDaniel and Bryce Dorsey all weekend and nothing stopped them on their way to the title. As far as Division I goes, Dripping Springs’ Austin Novosad was by far the most impressive player on the day. The zip, the technique, the decision-making were all there from the jump. Harker Heights’ speed up close and McKinney’s incredible 20-point comeback against Westlake was easily the highlight of the day.
My MVP: Today’s MVP could be Novosad, but I’ll give it to Hitchcock’s Dorsey who caught several touchdowns as well as a few defensive picks. Keep an eye out for this rising junior.
DCTF High School Insider Matt Stepp
The Division I group came together today, but before we get to the big schools, two small schools that didn’t win it but really impressed me today deserve a shout out. In Division III, credit goes to the Crane Golden Cranes, who, while stopping by Veterans Park on Thursday, discovered their head coach had quit. Instead of hanging his head and wondering what’s next, Crane stayed focused and ended up advancing to the quarter-finals before falling to Brady. In Division II, Wichita Falls deserves kudos as the Coyotes advanced to the semifinals before falling to Lorena.
On the Division I side, parity once again reigned supreme as six pools involved a three-way tie at 2-1, while another pool had a three-way tie at 1-2 and another pool had two teams finishing 2-1. That tells me we are going to have some very close matches in knockout brackets. DeSoto, for me, takes the crown as Most Impressive Team on Day 1 as the Eagles erased the “Pool of Death” by going 3-0 and winning every game by at least twenty points.
My MVP: San Antonio Brandeis QB JC Evans – The Bears QB will start showing up on recruiting radars real quick as the Broncos went 3-0 in pool play.
Greg Powers, DCTF Recruitment Analyst
Dripping Springs 2023 QB Austin Novosad (6’3, 185) is the DCTF’s newest four-star prospect, jumping 19 spots from No. 51 to No. 32 on the DCTF Hot 100. Novosad has plenty of tools that colleges covet – he processes the pitch quickly, has quick clearance, throws an accurate, catchable ball, and has the arm to slot it into tight windows. Novosad commits to Baylor.
My MVP: Desoto 2024 QB DJ Bailey (5’10, 175) was shredding defenses. He helped the Eagles to wins over Lake Travis, Fort Bend Hightower and El Paso Eastlake, beating the opposition 91-12.
Mallory Hartley, DCTF Associate Producer
Without a doubt, the most complete team I saw today was Division II champions Hitchcock. Nothing but greatness came from their star quarterback Lloyd Jones III, who had an abundance of weapons around him. In Division I, it’s no surprise that DeSoto looks solid all around. They finish the day undefeated and are sure to be in the mix of top teams in the final. Just like today, I expect great things from Johntay Cook II tomorrow.
My MVP: I have to give my MVP to Hitchcock quarterback Lloyd Jones III. The sophomore star showed up today, leading his team to the Division II title.
William Wilkerson, DCTF Digital Director
First, I’ll salute Dalan Rasberry from Dublin who pulled off one of the best late-game heroic efforts I’ve ever seen in a state tournament. The Lions found themselves trailing Stamford by two scores with just under two minutes left when Rasberry (6-4, 180) pointed a pass into the end zone for a touchdown and then caught the conversion in 1 point that followed. Then, with less than a minute to play, he intercepted a pass for a TD to give Dublin a 32-27 win. Hats off to you, Rasberry.
Another shoutout goes to linebacker Anna Grayson Stewart, who intercepted two passes for Pick-6 against Breckenridge. The Coyotes are loaded with talent in 2023 and look great in 2024 as well thanks to guys like Stewart.
The best quarterback I saw today was 2024 San Antonio Brandeis prospect JC Evans. His physical features (6ft 5in, 200) make him look like he was drawn in a video game. Then you see him unleash the cannon he has for a right arm, the ball placement he showed, and the calm demeanor he displays, and you catch yourself reaching for a console and controller. Hometown Incarnate Word and UTSA have both offered and it would be wise to do the same as soon as possible. He is special.
My MVP: Got to go with JC Evans of Brandeis who led his team to a 3-0 day in a pool with The Woodlands, Prosper and Mission. I loved everything about the way he carried himself and his throwing abilities are a sight to behold.