FORT WORTH — Rider brought its left-handed gun to Cowtown on Friday.
Just when you expected Domanic Thrasher, Carlos Fleeks and friends to run all over Fort Worth Dunbar, Jim Garfield came up with a completely different game plan.
Let quarterback Chase London shoot them down with his left arm.
"We knew he could throw the rock," Garfield said after his junior quarterback completed 15 of 22 passes for 221' yards and two touchdowns in the Raiders' 44-26 bi-district win over Dunbar here Friday night.
London completed 13 of 17 passes for 202 yards and the two TDs in the first half alone.
In that opening half, the Raiders had three receivers with more than 50 yards.
Josh Price had six catches for 59 yards; Brylan McCoy had three for 54 and a TD and John Hatch had two catches for 51.
It could have been even better.
London had two passes dropped and two touchdown throws called back.
"The offense was clicking. From the first series. We felt confident in the passing game," said London, who made only his third varsity start.
"They were just easy reads. They kept leaving that slot receiver open, so I just kept hitting him and getting five yards every play."
There is no telling how many yards or touchdowns he could have thrown for, but Rider — up by 10 at halftime — reverted to its old personality in the second half.
On the Raiders' first drive of the second half — with a touchdown needed to establish supremacy over Dunbar — Fleeks ran for 21 yards, Thrasher dashed for 16 and 8, then London put the points on the board with a 7-yard TD run.
Not long after that, the Rider quarterback, who was a backup when the season began, hit McCoy in stride for a 66-yard touchdown. Well, almost a 66-yard touchdown.
The play was nullified after the Raiders were whistled for having an illegal man downfield.
Davon Allison, who had dropped a pass right before the throw to McCoy, then ran 42 yards for Rider's final touchdown.
One of the reasons the Raiders threw a lot was because Dunbar did a great job shutting down the single wing.
And, although Gar won't admit it, it gave Fort Worth Southwest something else to work on this week before their Class 4A Division II area playoff game on Rider's home turf next week.
"We have another dimension as a team," said London, who has healed from his earlier hamstring injury and seems to have the confidence needed to be a playoff quarterback.
The left-handed gun is aiming to shoot down another Cowtown challenger.
Sports Editor Nick Gholson can be reached at email@example.com or 940-720-3447.