AMARILLO —The Muleshoe Mules are moving onto the next round of the Texas Class 2A playoffs.
Junior quarterback Garrett Riley completed 11 of 31 passes for 153 yards and three touchdowns Friday night to lead Muleshoe past Panhandle 34-14 in an opening-round game at Dick Bivins Stadium.
Senior running back Eric Washington rushed for 101 yards on nine carries for the Mules (9-2), and also caught three passes for 27 yards and a touchdown.
For Panhandle, junior tailback J.W. Benavidez led all rushers with 120 yards on 18 carries.
The Mules led 14-7 at halftime, then broke the game open on Riley’s touchdown passes of 23 yards to senior Brant Hamilton and 18 yards to Washington for a 27-7 lead with four minutes left in the third period.
Muleshoe broke on top late in the first period when Victor Vasquez picked off a pass by Panhandle junior quarterback Ryan Vance off and ran it back 32 yards for a touchdown.
Senior Austin Sherwood took over for Vance at quarterback, but went 6-for-24 for 70 yards. He gave the Panthers a 7-6 lead with 9:13 left in the half with on a four-yard touchdown run.
Riley’s first touchdown pass was a 9-yarder to Timmothy Connor with just under five minutes left in the half. Riley then threw to Hamilton for a 2-point conversion to give the Mules a 14-7 lead.