By Jim Irish
Photos by Jim Irish
Keyshon Moore will be on the frequent-flyer program next fall.
The Bastrop High School rising junior may be the only player to see significant snaps on both sides of the football.
He started all 10 games last season (2-8 overall) at cornerback on defense and played often at slot receiver and at running back in a two-back offense.
Moore will rarely come out of the game
Moore was a double threat on offense, rushing for 293 yards with 5 touchdowns and catching 25 passes for 356 yards and 3 touchdowns. With his quickness, he may have defenders gasping for air.
On defense, he had 12 tackles, one interception, and one fumble recovery.
Moore caught the attention of District 23-5A coaches, who selected him to the first team as a utility player.
Hardly intimidating at 5-foot-8, 152 pounds, Moore accelerates quickly off the line of scrimmage. That was also evident on the basketball court, where he was Bastrop’s leading scorer.
On the first play of the spring intrasquad game at Erhard Stadium on Friday, Moore made an over-the-shoulder catch for a 65-yard touchdown from transfer quarterback Quintaelyn Joyner. Later, he had a second touchdown on a 42-yard pass from Braden Tuck.
“He’s kinda all over the place,” Bastrop head coach Jake Griedl said about Moore. “This spring, we developed him a little more at the wide receiver position.”
Moore had no carries on Friday because the coaching staff’s goal was to prevent injuries.
“We know what he can do in the backfield,” Griedl said.
Moore will also be prominent on defense, not merely a spot player on third down.
"On Friday nights, when we're all wearing the same color, he's going to be on the field a lot. If that's what it takes to win, that's what we're gonna do."
-- Bastrop coach Jake Griedl about Keyshon Moore
“On Friday nights, when we’re all wearing the same color, he’s going to be on the field a lot,” Griedl said. “If that’s what it takes to win, that’s what we’re gonna do.”
Donner shifts to inside linebacker
Wesley Donner will be another impact player for Bastrop. The 5-11, 225-pound rising senior is shifting from defensive end to inside linebacker.
In the intrasquad game, Donner intercepted a Joyner pass and returned it 99 yards for a touchdown and then somersaulted into the end zone.
Last season, Donner led the defense with 52 tackles (43 solo). In addition, he had two quarterback sacks and two quarterback hurries. He received all-district second-team honors.
“I’m willing to do whatever the coaches ask me to do,” Donner said.
Griedl has a specific reason for the switch.
"We feel he's one of our best football players on defense."
-- Griedl discussing Donner
“We feel he’s one of our best football players on defense,” he said. “When he plays defensive end, you can run away from him. When he plays inside linebacker, he’s got a chance to make the play every (down). We’re putting our guys in the best possible position to have success.”
Joyner, a 6-1, 202-pound transfer from Manor, displayed a live arm in the intrasquad game and made only one bad pass, throwing in traffic and getting picked by Donner. In addition to Moore, Donner had TD passes to Bryan Pauley and Jaelyn Gratten.
Last season, he started at quarterback for Manor (7-4). His older brother, Quinten, started at running back at Manor and enrolled at the University of Southern California last spring.
“We’ll use his legs this fall…,” Griedl said about Joyner.
Another prominent transfer is Jaxon Taylor, a 6-6, 314-pound rising junior from Del Valle.
“We’re excited about him,” Griedl said. “He’s a 16-year-old giant, who’s still filling out his body.”
Former Bear Damari Monroe received a $1,000 L.B. Evans III Memorial Scholarship at halftime. Monroe, a wide receiver, will attend Division III Mary Hardin Baylor.
Former running back De’mire Thompson has signed with NAIA Louisiana Christian University in Franklin, La.
Jim Irish is a freelance writer in Bastrop, Texas