The outcome of the game means the third-ranked Longhorns will face Cambridge in their play-in game, while the Greyhounds will face off with Sequoyah. The winners of those matchups will advance to the Class AAAAA playoffs.
The victory was also Kell’s ninth straight over Pope.
“(Friday) was a team effort and we got some big plays on offense,” Kell coach Derek Cook said. “The emphasis now focuses on being in a one-game season. That sense of urgency will be conveyed this week in practice and there will be no room for errors.”
Kell (9-0, 4-0) held a slim 24-19 lead at halftime after allowing 233 passing yards by Pope quarterback Taylor Wolf.
Wolf would go on to throw for a game-high 347 yards and two touchdowns, but the Longhorns took control of the game in the third quarter behind their quarterback, Cameron Rosendahl.
Rosendahl, who finished with 203 yards passing and two touchdowns, connected with Henkle on a 6-yard scoring pass to increase the lead to 31-19.
Kell sealed the game in the fourth quarter when Henkle caught a 15-yard touchdown pass and then followed it with a 35-yard interception return for another score.
Kell got on the scoreboard first on a 5-yard touchdown run by Moxey off a pitch to the right side, giving the Longhorns the 7-0 lead early in the first quarter.
Pope responded on the first play of its next possession when Wolf connected on a screen pass to Logan Carr who raced 78 yards for a touchdown, tying the score at 7-all. Carr finished the game with a game-high 195 yards receiving.
“Our kids gave a great effort tonight and made big plays,” Pope coach Matt Kemper said. “We’re now playing a one-game season. Everything is on the line and hopefully our guys will respond to that and we’ll work hard this week in preparing for that.”
The Longhorns retook the lead, 10-7, later in the quarter on a 29-yard field goal by Cameron Massung.
The Greyhounds ended the first quarter with a 13-10 lead courtesy of a 1-yard quarterback sneak by Wolf.
Kell took a 17-13 lead early in the second quarter on Moxey’s 3-yard touchdown run. The Longhorns final touchdown of the first half was on a 4-yard run by Darian Harris, who had 106 yards rushing in the game.