6A DII State Preview: Katy vs. Cedar Hill
Some how, some way, the royal "we" found a way to get through this hectic, unprecedented season. There was always concern lurking in the background that the season would be further delayed or wouldn't even finish.
But here we are. The final week of a 21-week season with the final four games here.
Like the Wednesday's 5A DII preview and 5A DI preview, we're going to change up the preview style. Instead of previewing both teams, we'll take the local angle and dig deep into the DFW teams. First up is Cedar Hill, which meets Katy for the fourth time since 2012.
Outside of an overtime thriller against Rockwall-Heath in the Regional Finals, Cedar Hill has somewhat flown under the radar this season. After an incredible loss in the playoffs last year to Denton Guyer, it was tough to really qualify what type team Cedar Hill was entering the 2020 season.
And on the back of its star quarterback Kaidon Salter, Cedar Hill back near the top of the mountain.
HOW CEDAR HILL GOT HERE
Again, it's hard to sell the point that a 12-1 team is under the radar, but coming out of a district with Duncanville and DeSoto, that's sort of what happened. Quietly and efficiently, Cedar Hill marched through its schedule with its only blemish against Duncanville. In the playoffs, Cedar Hill outscored its first two opponents 72-0 and then continued its strong defensive efforts over the next three rounds, especially holding down a potent offense in Rockwall-Heath.
But the success of the team starts and stops with Salter. As he goes, so goes Cedar Hill. Case in point in last year's loss to Denton Guyer. Guyer kept the ball out of his hands and the team collapsed. It got revenge last week with its suffocating defense and Salter's ability to extend plays or break of big runs.
HOW CEDAR HILL WILL WIN
Keeping Kaidon Salter clean.
Cedar Hill has a tough task in going up against Katy's defense, and making sure Salter has a clean pocket and the run blocking scheme is buttoned up are the biggest priorities. Salter, because of his athletic ability, will make plays, but he will need his support cast to make those key plays as well to lessen the burden.
HOW CEDAR HILL LOSES
Getting Katy off the field.
Katy raced out to a 42-0 lead at halftime last week and did it with a efficient run game and dominant defense. If Cedar Hill cannot keep Katy's offense from marching up and down the field, it'll be a long day. Again, if Katy does what Guyer did last year and keep Salter off the field, Cedar Hill will find it difficult to win.
Katy is historically known as a ground and pound team and is back to its truest form this year. The combo platter of a strong rung game and equally strong defense will limit Cedar Hill just enough, which isn't know for its high octane, high-scoring offense.
Katy wins 31-20
KICKOFF: 1 p.m. Saturday @ AT&T Stadium (Arlington)
LINE: Katy favored by 10
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