Hebron and The Colony Ready To Take On New Districts

Hebron and The Colony Ready To Take On New Districts

by Steve Gamel

Hebron and The Colony are used to being placed in a tough district lineup every year. That won’t change next season, either.

The University Interscholastic League announced during its biennial reclassification and realignment day on February 1 that both Hebron and The Colony will have new districts for the 2018-20 seasons. Hebron will be in a revamped eight-team District 6-6A that includes Coppell, Irving, Irving MacArthur, Irving Nimitz, and fellow Lewisville ISD teams Lewisville, Flower Mound, and Marcus.

Meanwhile, The Colony will be District 5-5A (Division I) for football with Little Elm and Frisco schools Centennial, Heritage, Independence, Liberty, Lone Star, and Wakeland.

Both districts are a departure from what these schools are used to. While Hebron is used to being aligned with Marcus, Lewisville, Coppell, and Flower Mound, adding the Irving schools is a huge shift. Last year, their district mates included Southlake Carroll, Euless Trinity, Trophy Club Nelson, and L.D. Bell.

The Colony has the biggest shift given the UIL’s decision to add a split-division format (Divisions I and II) for Class 5A schools in an effort to equal out the competition between teams. Schools with enrollment numbers between 1,840 and 2,189 are in Division I. Those between 1,150 and 1,839 are Division II.

The new format also creates a situation where the district slates for football in Class 5A will not be the same as other sports. For example, The Colony’s basketball team and other sports besides football will be in District 8-5A with Denton High School, Denton Ryan, Denton Braswell, Lake Dallas, Little Elm, and Justin Northwest.

Incidentally, there is no split-division format yet in 6A, so the district lineup is the same across all sports.

The good news coming out of realignment day is both Hebron and The Colony appear to adapt well to change – and competition.

In Hebron’s case, the Hawks are a perennial playoff favorite. This season was no exception as Hebron won eight games, finished second in a tough District 5-6A, and made it to the first round before losing to Allen 48-17.

Despite that loss, the Hawks finished the year averaging just more than 400 yards of offense.

Meanwhile, The Colony built its success this season behind a beefed-up offensive line and a powerful run game with running backs Jadan Abdallah, Myles Price, and Andrew Nelson. The running game was huge considering the Cougars lost star quarterback Jemel Jones Jr. to a season-ending injury before the season started.

Abdallah rushed for 863 yards and nearly seven yards per carry while scoring eight times. Price wasn’t far behind with 635 rushing yards and seven scores. Nelson and Javontae Thomas combined for 554 yards and seven scores.

That running game lifted the Cougars to a 5-2 record in District 14-5A. One of those wins was an impressive 14-7 decision over Prosper, which is now a Class 6A school, as Abdallah rushed for 101 yards and quarterback Mickey Harrington threw for 158 yards and two touchdowns. The Cougars closed the regular season with a 48-0 win over Carrollton R.L. Turner.

Unfortunately, that luck ran out in a 41-16 loss to state-ranked Frisco Lone Star in the first round.

Both teams undoubtedly will have a chance to get back into the playoff race next season. But all eyes will be on the offseason as they prepare for the tough road ahead.

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