LIBERTY CITY -- The chances of Sabine making it back to the UIL Class 3A playoffs may have left James Bamberg Stadium with the New Boston Lions on Friday night.
Winless all season, and under a full moon, New Boston shocked the Cardinals, 44-32, putting a serious dent in any hope the Cardinals had to make the 3A postseason.
Sabine (2-7) finishes the regular season at Hughes Springs next Friday night.
Sabine's first drive, bolstered by power running by Glen George, stalled out at the New Boston 7-yard-line, forcing Sabine coach Rex Sharp to send in Fernando Jaimes for a 24-yard field goal. Jaimes hit it to put Sabine in front, 3-0.
A nice kickoff by Jaimes, coupled with a NB block-in-the-back, put the Lions deep in their own territory, at the 9. The Lions got the play of the game early, though, as Kevon Thompson burst through the Sabine defense for a 91-yard scoring run, putting his team up 6-3.
The Cardinals had good field position after a short kick, but Cameron Smith picked off a pass by Sabine's Scottie Taylor. Sabine's defense stopped New Boston, but another interception, this time by Samuel Sanchez, set up New Boston for another score, a 68-yard pass from Tyler Strain to Sanchez for a 12-3 lead.
Eli Morris managed a 55-yard return, and four plays later, George was in the end zone to cut the lead to 12-10. And then, Sabine's T Taylor made an interception of his own. On the first play of the second quarter, Scottie Taylor hit Clayton Simmons for a touchdown. Sabine took a 16-12 lead.
New Boston, though, showed they could gut it out, too, and held the ball for the next seven minutes, capping the drive with a 2-yard pass to Sanchez to regain the lead, 18-16.
Sabine tried a 41-yard field goal on its next possession, but it was blocked, and New Boston added another score, a 27-yard touchdown pass to Desundre Robinson for a 24-16 NB halftime advantage.
A Sabine fumble led to a 46-yard touchdown pass from Strain to Robinson in the third quarter. Sabine answered with a 1-yard plunge by George, but the Cardinals still trailed, 32-24.
In the fourth quarter and running clock, Thompson scored for the second time, this time a 34-yard touchdown for the Lions. Strain and Sanchez connected for a 33-yard score, finishing the contest.
Strain finished with 372 passing yards and five touchdowns.
George had 156 yards rushing for Sabine. Taylor had 97 passing yards, and Simmons, 49 receiving yards.
It's going to be difficult, if not impossible, for Sabine to get into the postseason. Jefferson, White Oak, and Hughes Springs, Sabine's next opponent, have already locked up playoff seeds, and Sabine doesn't have a district win.