The Fort Bend Chargers beat the Stephenville Faith Knights 74-56 on Dec. 1 at College Station to win the Texas Association of Independent Athletic Organizations division 2 state championship.
The Chargers are based in Sugar Land and provide home-schooled students a place to play tackle football.
In the championship game, Fort Bend and Stephenville were tied 22-22 at the end of the first quarter. In the second quarter, the Chargers shut out the Knights while scoring 16 points to take a 38-22 halftime lead. In the third quarter, Stephenville scored 14 points, but the Chargers added 20 to increase their lead to 58-36. The Chargers held on in the fourth quarter, and the final score was 74-56, earning the Chargers their first state championship.
“Our guys had tremendous cohesiveness and relationships this year. They really bonded during the season and developed deep friendships. They just had a burning desire to play for each other,” Chargers head coach Larry Pavlik said.
Quarterback Dylan Pendergast completed 39 of 48 passes for 517 yards and eight touchdowns, and he rushed six times for 36 yards.
“Dylan is a super great guy and a phenomenal leader. He has been playing with us since seventh grade. When we go hurry-up, he calls all of the plays,” Pavlik said.
Ethan Sicking caught 12 passes for 171 yards.
“Ethan is a sophomore and came back to us this year after taking a year off to play soccer. He broke a finger midway through the season and he caught 12 passes in the championship game with one of his hands heavily bandaged. I don’t know how he did it,” Pavlik said.
Noah Tingle caught nine passes for 175 yards, Noah Sprinkle caught eight passes for 48 yards, Kade Guerra had six receptions for 45 yards and Jonathan Kirby had six catches for 65 yards.
On defense, Kade Guerra and Dylan Pendergast had six tackles each.
The Chargers have been in existence since 2011. They play under the auspices of the Texas Association of Independent Athletic Organizations, which offers structured play in six man football, girls and boys basketball, baseball, softball, track and field and volleyball for private schools, charter schools, home school organizations and public schools. They currently have organizations in Houston, Dallas Metroplex, Austin, San Antonio, El Paso, and Waco.
Six-man football is similar to 11-man football with the following changes:
• The field is 80-yards by 40-yards,
• A first down is 15 yards,
• A kickoff must travel 15 yards before it can be covered,
• The scoring is six points for a touchdown, two points for an extra point kick and one point for a run, and a field goal is four points.
• The player receiving the center snap must hand the ball off or throw the ball – he can not run beyond the line of scrimmage. Many teams, including the Chargers, have a back receive the center snap and toss the ball to the quarterback who can then run, pass or hand-off the ball.
The Chargers ended their season with an 11-1 record.