At a school that has produced four Football Bowl Subdivision-level running backs since the start of the 2008 season, Hendrickson seniors Chance Waz and Trai Mosley are making names for themselves on the other side of the football.
Waz and Mosley will return to the Hendrickson secondary this fall after a busy summer that saw the defensive backs secure college scholarships. Waz gave Colorado’s football program a verbal commitment, while Mosley pledged to Nebraska.
Waz, a safety, and Mosley, a cornerback, led Hendrickson to a 2-2 record at this weekend’s State 7-on-7 Tournament in Leander.
The Hawks went 2-1 in pool play on Friday. But in the first round of the Division I championship tournament on Saturday, DeSoto eliminated Hendrickson with a 52-26 win.
“I’m a competitive person so I don’t like losing,” Waz said. “We try to (be) humbled and learn from the loss, but then get back to work on Monday.”
At the Southwest Williamson County Regional Park, Hendrickson held 7-0 and 13-7 leads over DeSoto, but the Eagles scored the contest’s next 26 points. Trailing 39-26 in the second half, Waz made a one-handed interception to keep the Hawks in the game, but that turnover would be the Hendrickson defense’s only stop.
“I think it will teach us to compete better,” Mosley said of the defeat. “Makes us think more about how we do things around here.”
Hendrickson was one of five Austin-area teams that competed in the State 7-on-7 Tournament’s Division I championship bracket.
Like Hendrickson, Bowie and Hutto lost their first-round games. Lake Travis and Westwood were eliminated in the tournament’s second round by Arlington Bowie and Houston Lamar.
Southlake Carroll, which handed Hendrickson its only other loss of the weekend, won the Division I title on Saturday with a 46-27 win over Houston Stratford. The 19-point win was the Dragons’ fifth victory of the day.
“We were fortunate enough to get into the championship bracket, that was neat,” Westwood senior Mason Bartek said. “It was great seeing some great competition out there and competing. We could have done a little better but we faced some good competition.”
The State 7-on-7 Tournament was the final tune-up for Hendrickson before practices start on Aug. 5. A Class 4A program before the 2012 season, Hendrickson won the District 16-5A title last year, and the Hawks are expected to contend for another championship this fall.
The Hawks’ offense will be led by Samaje Perine, a 2,000-yard rusher who has committed to Oklahoma, and Houston-bound wide receiver Latrell Martin. Anchoring the defense will be Waz and Mosley, who will be joined in the Hendrickson secondary by juniors Josh Wydermeyer and P.J. Mbanasor.
Waz compiled 115 tackles and All-Central Texas accolades during the 2012 season. Mosley was a second-team all-district honoree.
Hendrickson gave up 21.3 points per game in 2012, and 12 of the 32 touchdowns that the Hawks surrendered were scored through the air. Waz expects to see some more passes thrown toward him and Mosley this fall.
“I feel like a lot of teams are going to try to come at us and throw the ball to see what we have,” Waz said. “I think we have a lot of pressure on our back… they know about us, so they’re going to try to beat us.”