It's a coach's worst nightmare: losing a player to an injury in a meaningless regular season finale before the playoffs begin.
Tiger head coach Tommy Dunn must be in dreamland because he not only came away from Hillsboro injury-free but he also saw his team pitch a 31-0 nothing shutout.
"We only called two runs in the whole first half," said Dunn. "We wanted to win but we wanted to come out healthy. Chase (Evatt) has been our workhorse and we wanted him to rest up. He's the guy who gets hit the most so we only gave him a couple rushes. We had a big lead at halftime, and were able to get most of our starters out of the game. I couldn't have asked for it to turn out any better.”
Following a rough performance against China Spring, the Tiger defense returned to form by tossing its second shutout of the season.
The Eagles had only 121 yards of total offense, including five yards on 1-9 passing.
Curran Morrison cracked double digits in tackles for the first time this season with 10 while Graham Noell and Ivan Funez added nine and eight, respectively.
On the season, Collin Lane leads the team in the tackle department with 77 with Beto Hernandez nipping at his heels with 68.
Hunter Ratliff finished the regular season as the sack leader, while Immanuel Morales and Ty Taylor were the Tiger interception leaders with two each.
Evatt basically got the night off and Colt Plaster was "Mr. Offense" completing 21-31 passes for 375 yards and four touchdowns.
Jorge Espino led the Tigers with a pair of touchdown catches, but Taylor led the Glen Rose receiving core everywhere else with six catches for 193 yards.
Taylor finished the regular season with 822 yards on 50 catches to lead the receivers. Evatt leads the ground game with 646 yards on 107 carries.
When the regular season began, the Tigers had proven veterans at key positions: Taylor at receiver, Evatt at running back and DJ Figueroa on the line. However, the green signal caller left a big question mark, especially after an 0-1 start.
After game No. 10, that question has been solved.
Plaster finished the season 144-243 for 2,188 yards with 19 touchdowns and eight interceptions, and now will continue to lead the Tigers as they face Wimberley in the opening round of the Class 3A Division II playoffs.
"Colt's doing an outstanding job and has turned into a great quarterback," said Dunn. "They better watch out if they bring too much heat because when he gets in the open field he's quick and shifty. He's definitely a playoff-caliber quarterback."
Wimberley enters the bi-district round of the playoffs as 8-3A champions with a very strong backfield, beginning at the quarterback position.
"(He's) probably a little better (than Case McCoy)," said Dunn. "He's a better runner. They've been holding him back because he had a shoulder injury early in the season, but I expect they'll let him run this week. Also, their best wide receiver is the quarterback's brother, so they have a really good rapport."
The teams will meet on Friday in Killeen at 7:30 p.m. in a 3A Division II playoff opener.
"We want to play more than just one week (in the playoffs) and to do that we have to get by Wimberley," said Dunn. "We're going to have to play our best game of the year on Friday. We'll have our hands full, but they're going to have their hands full too."