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Llano’s undefeated state run ends in semifinal loss to Hallettsville

Llano football loses semifinal contest

Llano senior quarterback Case Kuykendall broke loose for a 71-yard scamper that led to the Yellow Jackets’ first touchdown against Hallettsville on Dec. 10. The Brahmas won the Class 3A Division I state semifinal game 53-28. Photo by Martelle Luedecke/Luedecke Photography

The Llano High School football team’s historic 2020 season came to an end Dec. 10 in a 53-28 loss to Hallettsville in a Class 3A Division I state semifinal game.

“Hallettsville is a good team,” Llano head coach Matt Green said. “We had to try to do some things to get back in it. Our kids fought, they battled all night. A semifinal run is something to be proud of, and I couldn’t be prouder of our kids, our coaches, and this community.”

In a season filled with new program records, what stands out for the Yellow Jackets (13-1, 4-0 District 13-3A Division I) are that they played in five postseason games, scored more than 500 points in a season, and won more games than any other previous Llano squad.

Llano had only one lead in the Thursday contest at 7-6 with just under 5 minutes left in the first quarter, courtesy of senior quarterback Case Kuykendall’s 4-yard run to the end zone. The key play was his 71-yard scamper to get to first and goal.

But on a field filled with stars, there was only one superstar: Brahmas senior running back Jonathon Brooks, who unofficially had 25 carries for 304 yards and six touchdowns. He also returned an interception about 70 yards for a score.

Meanwhile, Kuykendall completed 13 passes for 203 yards and two touchdowns and had 22 rushes for 162 yards and a score. Senior receiver Quincy Prince caught six passes for 106 yards and a touchdown and had a 101-yard kickoff return for another score.

Green noted many football teams haven’t had an extra month of postseason play like his team had this year.

“A lot of programs in the state would love to send seniors out like this,” he said. “I know how hard it’s been to get to the semifinals. There’s lots and lots and lots of things that were accomplished. I’m going to tell them they got to live the dream of what 99 percent of teams don’t get to do. I’m super proud they experienced the dream.”