Home | Sports | Football | Life Waxahachie clobbers Cedar Hill Newman for first win under new head coach Sam Riepe

Life Waxahachie clobbers Cedar Hill Newman for first win under new head coach Sam Riepe

By Travis M. Smith | Ellis County Sports

WAXAHACHIE — Behind over 400 rushing yards, Life Waxahachie began the Sam Riepe era with an emphatic statement on Friday.

The Mustangs shut out Cedar Hill Newman International 69-0 at Mustang Stadium to open the 2023 football season.

Kordell Berry paced the Mustang backfield, rushing four times for 113 yards and three touchdowns. His longest carry went for a 57-yard score.

The 5-foot-11, 210-pound senior rushed for 1,79 yards and 18 touchdowns a season ago. He averaged, yes, averaged 192.1 yards per game for the Mustangs.

“He’s kind of our silent leader,” said Riepe of the standout running back. 

As a team, the Mustangs needed just 23 carries to amass 425 yards (18.5 YPC) and score 8 touchdowns.

Kevin Willingham (7-94), Bryson Jackson (2-62), junior quarterback James Hicks (2-52), Isaiah Ford (2-31) and Dontavious Branch (1-28) all scored on the ground in the win.

“We need to execute upfront on every single play, and that’s the main thing,” said Riepe of the offense. “That was the big thing we talked about at halftime and, I thought, we did a much better job of that in the second half. Our offense looked a lot better in the second half, and that’s a positive moving into week two.” 

Despite the shutout, Riepe stated the Mustang defense still had opportunities to execute better.

“There were times that we didn’t tackle very well or that we didn’t line up correctly in our formations,” Riepe explained. “We have to be able to align. If we don’t align, we are going to get beat.

“[The Newman] running back had a couple of good runs and those were because we needed to tackle better. We got better as the game went on, but we have a tough opponent coming up in Athens, so we have to do better.”

Riepe pointed to linebacker Corey Scott Jr. (6-0, 200 pounds) as being the catalyst and leader of the Life Waxahachie defense.

“He’s kind of been our vocal guy for the entire team and does a great job of getting us lined up on defense,” Riepe added.

Riepe was named the head coach of the Life Waxahachie program in January. He spent the 2022 season as the Mustangs’ defensive coordinator.

Riepe had an overall record of 15-25 with a pair of 3A playoff berths as the Maypearl Panther head coach from 2018-21. The first season saw the Panthers go winless, though Riepe was dealt a hand with fewer than 10 seniors with varsity experience on the roster. He served as the Panthers’ defensive coordinator prior to his in-house promotion.


Life Waxahachie will face (0-1) Athens for a 7:30 p.m. kick-off Friday at Bruce Field in Athens. The Hornets dropped their week one contest to Brownsboro, 29-28.

The Mustangs fell to Athens in lopsided fashion last season, 48-18. They rebounded for back-to-back wins against Ferris (50-37) and Wills Point (46-20), which proved to be the lone two victories for the program during the 2022 campaign. Life Waxahachie will face both teams against this season in weeks three and four. 


All photos by Fred Phipps/Ellis County Sports


Travis M. Smith, @Travis5mith


About Travis M. Smith

Travis M. Smith is the owner and content director of Ellis County Sports and has over a decade of award-winning sports coverage. He most recently served as the digital sports director for KBEC 1390AM/99.1FM. He is the former managing editor of the Waxahachie Daily Light, Midlothian Mirror and Glen Rose Reporter.

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