STORY BY: TIM SCHNETTLER
NAVASOTA — The second-ranked Navasota Rattlers continued to roll Friday night posting a 49-6 victory over the Houston Sterling Raiders on Homecoming night at Rattler Stadium.
The Rattlers, who improved to 3-0 on the season, scored 28 points in the first half and never looked back.
Quarterback Kadarius Baker threw for 369 yards and six touchdowns, giving him 13 passing touchdowns through the first three games of the season. Austin Collins and Solomon McGinty continued to be Baker’s favorite targets, each catching two scoring passes.
“It is a great win for us,” Navasota head coach Lee Fedora said. “Overall I thought we spread the ball around great.”
McGinty finished with six receptions for 143 yards and Collins had four receptions for 135 yards.
Demarcus Lee and Terrance Creeks hauled in the other touchdown passes for the Rattlers, the first of the season for both players. Hunter Sparkman also had his first touchdown of the season as he scored the final points of the night on a 1-yard run.
Navasota’s offense finished with 500 total yards of offense, while the defense kept Sterling’s offense in check limiting it to 220 yards, 163 of which came on the ground.
The Rattlers scored twice in each of the first two quarters, as Baker connected with four different receivers on four scoring passes.
The first came when Creeks hauled in a pass on the sideline then weaved his way to a 17-yard score. Michael Martinez added the first of his four first-half extra points to make it 7-0 at the 6:11 mark of the first quarter.
Less than four minutes later, Baker threw his second touchdown of the night, this one to McGinty. On the play, which started at the Sterling 7-yard line, McGinty tipped the ball into the air before reaching up to pull it in.
The Rattlers continued the onslaught in the second quarter when Baker hit Lee on a 6-yard slant that capped a 8-play, 62-yard drive to make it 21-0 less than three minutes into the second quarter.
The next time the Rattlers got the ball, it didn’t take them long to score as Collins turned a simple bubble screen into a 75 yard score that made it 28-0 heading into halftime.
Sterling had two serious forays into Navasota territory, but each timed was turned away when the Navasota defense held on fourth down.
Navasota continued the scoring the first time it got the ball in the third quarter when Collins hauled in a 36-yard pass that upped the lead to 35-0.
Sterling got on the scoreboard late in the third when Adrian Robeson plowed in from the 1. The extra point failed leaving the score at 35-6.
Baker and McGinty hooked up for the second time early in the fourth on a 71-yard scoring pass and Sparkman rounded out the scoring with a 3-yard run at the 6:55 mark of the fourth quarter.
The Rattlers return to action next Friday when they play host to the Class 2A Lexington Eagles in a 7:30 contest at Rattler Stadium.
“They will have their guys ready to go and we will not take them lightly,” Fedora said of the Eagles.