Salesmanship Club Raises $5.6M at Nelson

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Jordan Spieth and friends helped to raise $5.6 million at the Byron Nelson Championship in May. (Photo: Chris McGathey)

Jordan Spieth and friends helped to raise $5.6 million at the Byron Nelson Championship in May. (Photo: Chris McGathey)

While excessive rain turned the golf course into a muddy mess, it didn’t put a damper on the charitable efforts of this year’s Byron Nelson Championship.

The Salesmanship Club, which is the host organization for the PGA Tour event in Irving, said this week that the tournament raised more than $5.6 million in May for Momentous Institute, a Dallas nonprofit organization that provides education and therapeutic services to repair the social and emotional health of children.

Since the tournament began in 1968, it has raised $143 million for charity, and has consistently been among the top philanthropic events of its kind in the country.


Scots Hold Off Late Centennial Rally

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Stephen Dieb scored three touchdowns for Highland Park during a 28-26 win over Frisco Centennial on Saturday. (Photo: Don Johnson)

Stephen Dieb scored three touchdowns for Highland Park during a 28-26 win over Frisco Centennial on Saturday. (Photo: Don Johnson)

ALLEN – At first glance, Highland Park looked like it was already in midseason form during the first half of Saturday’s season opener in the Tom Landry Classic.

By the end, the Scots had to hold off a furious rally by Frisco Centennial for a 28-26 win that prompted a sigh of relief.

The primary reason was speedy Centennial tailback Anthony Pegues, who was the workhorse for the Titans with 306 rushing yards and three touchdowns. His third score came on his 38th carry of the game – a 1-yard plunge with 17 seconds left that cut the HP lead to 28-26. However, a pass on the ensuing two-point conversion attempt sailed out of bounds, preserving the win for the Scots.


Allen, Scots Start Season With Optimism

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Henry Allen will make his first varsity start at quarterback on Saturday against Frisco Centennial. (Photo: Chris McGathey)

Henry Allen will make his first varsity start at quarterback on Saturday against Frisco Centennial. (Photo: Chris McGathey)

When Highland Park opens the season on Saturday, its expectations won’t match its experience level.

That’s common for the Scots, who annually have high levels of roster turnover each year but still manage to be among the top teams in the Dallas area.

HP will meet Frisco Centennial as part of the annual Tom Landry Classic in Allen, in a rematch of a season-opening game the Scots won 47-0 a year ago.

That victory jump-started a 10-2 campaign in HP’s first season at the Class 6A level. The Scots lost 19 of 22 starters from that squad, but players and coaches feel they might be even better this year.


Improved Depth Should Boost HP Defense

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Highland Park boasts more depth and quickness on defense this season. (Photo: Chris McGathey)

Highland Park boasts more depth and quickness on defense this season. (Photo: Chris McGathey)

A year ago, Highland Park entered its first season in Class 6A with a new defensive coordinator, eight new starters, and plenty of uncertainty about how it might stop opposing offenses.

The Scots responded by posting four shutouts during the regular season and turning into statistically the best defense in District 10-6A. And that could be a springboard to an even more impressive performance this year.

“They worked so hard to improve on some of the little things that maybe we let slide in the past,” said HP defensive coordinator Don Woods. “They started priding themselves on those shutouts.”


Scots Confident New QB Will Fit Their System

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Henry Allen is the new quarterback for HP this season. (Photo: Chris McGathey)

Henry Allen is the new quarterback for HP this season. (Photo: Chris McGathey)

Don’t expect a switch at quarterback to change Highland Park’s traditional success on offense this season.

Henry Allen will be the latest signal-caller to take over the Scots’ spread attack after seeing limited action in a reserve role last year. But don’t let the lack of experience fool you — Allen led the school to an undefeated junior-varsity campaign in 2014 and has many of the same dual-threat tools as his predecessor, two-year starter Brooks Burgin.

“We need a dual-threat guy for our offense to be really effective,” said HP offensive coordinator Grayson Wells. “He can throw and run. He throws a pretty pass and he sees the field and makes good decisions.”

HP will open the season on Saturday against Frisco Centennial at the Tom Landry Classic in Allen.


Scots Find Strength in Numbers

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Highland Park football captains — from left, Matthew Barge, Jack Sides, Henry Allen, and Hayden Schnieders — placed a priority on offseason strength and conditioning for the Scots. (Photo: Don Johnson)

Highland Park football captains — from left, Matthew Barge, Jack Sides, Henry Allen, and Hayden Schnieders — placed a priority on offseason strength and conditioning for the Scots. (Photo: Don Johnson)

There were days during the summer when Jack Sides would have rather been home relaxing than making the trek to Highland Park High School to lift weights and run conditioning drills.

But he knew that if he didn’t show up for regular sessions with his teammates, his phone would be buzzing in a hurry.

“I knew if I took a day off and didn’t have a good excuse, I was going to hear from about 40 different people,” said Sides, a returning starter at offensive tackle.


Scots Are Part of Landry Classic Tradition

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Highland Park blanked Frisco Centennial 47-0 in last year's Tom Landry Classic. The rematch comes on Saturday. (Photo: Chris McGathey)

Highland Park blanked Frisco Centennial 47-0 in last year’s Tom Landry Classic. The season-opening rematch comes on Saturday. (Photo: Chris McGathey)

All week, we’ll be counting down to the start of the 2015 football season, which comes on Saturday when Highland Park faces Frisco Centennial in the Tom Landry Classic.

So let’s talk about the event, which has been a staple of the Scots’ schedule since 2002 and is one of the longest running “classic” events of its kind in the country.

HP has a record of 10-3 in the Landry Classic, including a 47-0 win over Centennial last year at SMU’s Ford Stadium. This year’s game will be at Eagle Stadium in Allen, and will be preceded by a matchup between state powers Allen and Denton Guyer on Friday night.


Dieb, Defense Boost HP in Scrimmage

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Highland Park's Stephen Dieb provided some highlights during Friday's scrimmage against Plano West at Highlander Stadium. (Photo: Chris McGathey)

Highland Park running back Stephen Dieb provided some highlights during Friday’s scrimmage against Plano West at Highlander Stadium. (Photo: Chris McGathey)

Two of the top offensive teams in the Dallas area took the field on Friday, and the result was a defensive struggle.

In reality, you probably shouldn’t read too much into the scrimmage between Highland Park and Plano West at Highlander Stadium, but the most notable takeaway was that both defenses rendered the big plays scarce.

“I thought it was even,” said HP head coach Randy Allen. “Plano West is a good opponent. Both teams have good defenses and didn’t give up many big plays.”


Scots Meet Wolves in Scrimmage Tonight

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Stephen Dieb and the Scots will face Plano West tonight in a scrimmage. (Photo: Chris McGathey)

Stephen Dieb and the Scots will face Plano West tonight in a scrimmage. (Photo: Chris McGathey)

With the season opener just a week away, Highland Park players and coaches are ready for their primary dress rehearsal.

That comes tonight, when the Scots scrimmage Plano West at Highlander Stadium. The varsity action likely will begin about 7 p.m.

It will provide a valuable test for an HP roster filled with new faces, including quarterback Henry Allen, who is scheduled to make his first varsity start on Aug. 29 in the Tom Landry Classic against Frisco Centennial.


Scots Youth Clinic to Benefit Gridiron Heroes

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Come to the youth clinic on Saturday and donate to Gridiron Heroes.

Come to the youth clinic on Saturday and donate to Gridiron Heroes.

Highland Park will host its annual youth football clinic on Saturday benefiting Gridiron Heroes, a foundation that provides long-term resources for athletes who have sustained spinal-cord injuries.

Scots players and coaches, including head coach Randy Allen, will oversee drills for boys in grades 1-5 at the school’s indoor practice facility across from Highlander Stadium. After the hourlong event, they will sign autographs.

The event is free, although a donation of $25 is recommended for the foundation. Last year, the clinic raised about $5,000.


These Youngsters Unleashed an Ambush

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Team members include, left to right, front row: Pete Humrichouse, Carson Runnels, Ethan Scott, Blake Muschalek, Blair Brennan, and Jay Cox. Back row: Kyle Benefield, Asher Wilburn, J.J. Pennington, Riter White, and Cooper Alford. In the back is coach Don Smith.

Team members include, left to right, front row: Pete Humrichouse, Carson Runnels, Ethan Scott, Blake Muschalek, Blair Brennan, and Jay Cox. Second row: Kyle Benefield, Asher Wilburn, J.J. Pennington, Riter White, and Cooper Alford. In the back is coach Don Smith.

The Dallas Ambush 7-on-7 team was not intimidated by the surroundings at AT&T Stadium.

Instead, the team of fifth-graders, many of them from the Park Cities and Preston Hollow, won their age group in the recent Lone Star Youth Championship tournament with a 35-0 win over the Katy All-Stars in the title game.

Don Smith coached the winning squad, while Asher Wilburn was the quarterback. Congratulations to all.


Give a New Life to Used Sports Equipment

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These boys look forward to your donation.

These boys look forward to your donation, so they can pay it forward.

Almost everybody has some sports equipment tucked away in their attic or garage that’s either become obsolete or a relic of bygone athletic accomplishments.

There’s a better use for such, ahem, treasures. For example, try donating them to Replay Sports, a Park Cities nonprofit group that will hold its annual collection drive during the next two Saturday mornings.

You can donate your “gently used” items from 8 a.m. to noon on Aug. 15 at Highlander Stadium and on Aug. 22 at Highland Park Middle School.