ABILENE, Texas - There were tons of big plays in Cooper's 41-37 come-from-behind win over Grapevine, but none were bigger than the game-winning, 22-yard touchdown pass from Ender Freeman to Myller Royals.
"The play was going to Myller," Freeman, the Cougars' senior quarterback, said. "But even if it wasn't, something's going to happen with me throwing the ball to Myller."
Freeman's connection with Royals was constant in the week two win, and was a big part of his 463-yard, three-touchdown passing performance on his way to being named the KTXS Abilene Teacher's Federal Credit Union Player of the Week.
In just his second varsity start, Freeman completed his first 15 passes, and helped dig Cooper out of a 21-7 early deficit to the same team which blew out the Cougars 61-7 last season.
Cooper head coach Todd Moebes said Freeman's play did not surprise him.
"It may have been new for everybody else, but not for Ender," said Moebes. "He's played through being a starter 10, 20-thousand times in his mind. He's planned like he's the start for four years."
The final touchdown came with just 1:01 remaining in the fourth quarter.
Cooper's win was even sweeter for Freeman, who was emotional after the game. He had promised a win to his grandmother, who suffered a stroke recently and was in the hospital fighting pneumonia.
"She's been a big thing in my life, a big part of my life," said Freeman. "To see her sick was kind of hard, but I know she's going to be alright."
While the Cougars celebrated the victory, a coach held up a Cooper shirt that each player would sign for Freeman to deliver to his grandmother.
"She had just woken up form a nap when I got there, but then as soon as I pulled out the shirt she was doing good," smiled Freeman.
"She was so crazy about happy it."
As of Monday, Freeman said his grandmother was out of the hospital and rehabbing in Abilene.
Freeman is also on the Honor Roll and is the school's student body president. During second period student council class, his classmates worked on posters to help gather donations for a school in the Houston-area affected by Hurricane Harvey.
"I love these people. I love this group. We do a lot of work for our school and for our community. I love getting to hang out with them, especially second period. It's your favorite part of the day."
Freeman and the Cougars hope his excellent play continues as they take on Abilene High in the Crosstown Showdown on Friday at 7:30 p.m. at Shotwell Stadium.
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