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High Schooler’s Punch-Out Forced Fumble Proves Playing to the Whistle Pays Off

"We play until the whistle blows," Stephenville High School coach Sterling Doty told the Austin American Statesman.

Wide receiver/safety Coy Eakin took his coach's words to heart in the Texas 4A State Championship game. The senior finished the day with nine receptions for 187 yards and four touchdowns to go along with a forced fumble and an interception.

Eakin's incredible performance won him the game's offensive MVP award. It also helped secure a state title over the Austin LBJ Jaguars. His stat sheet jumps off the page, but he gave having a nose for the ball a whole new meaning on a wacky play in the third quarter.

Coy Eakin's Forced Fumble Assist

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The Stephenville Yellow Jackets held a commanding 24-7 lead early in the second half. Quarterback Ryder Lambert overthrew Eakin, and Austin LBJ cornerback Noah Baker picked it off near the goal line.

Baker looked for an opening, but Eakin was lurking in the background unbeknownst to him. He took it out to the six-yard line, and Eakin punched the ball away from behind. Stephenville's Kallan Kimbrough sniped it out of the air and took it into the end zone for six. Add an assist to Eakin's stat line.

The play was the epitome of Austin LBJ's unfavorable day. Not only did the Jaguars cough up the ball five times, including four in the first quarter alone, when they were about to catch a break, the tide immediately turned back towards Stephenville. The epitome of brutality.

Austin LBJ bounced back to bring the game from a walloping to a more respectable 38-21 defeat. Still, there was never a doubt Stephenville was going to win.

As for Eakin, he could've easily given up on the play. After all, his team was up by 24, and he already had the game of his life. His hustle put the proverbial nail in the coffin.

The result? A state championship, an MVP award, and an epic highlight.

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