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December 17, 2011

Gray sets national record in state title game victory

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Tom Bergeron is the Senior Editor for RivalsHigh.com. Send ideas, questions or comments to TBergero@Yahoo-Inc.com and follow on Twitter.

Superstar high school running back Johnathan Gray burst onto the national scene last year, when he ran for eight touchdowns in a Texas state title game.

Saturday afternoon, the Aledo (Texas) High star broke into the national record book, when he scored just one.

Gray broke the all-time high school touchdown record when he ran for a 37-yard score late in his team's 49-28 victory over Manvel in the Texas Class 4A, Division II final at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

The score was the 205th touchdown in Gray's amazing career, putting him one above the mark set by Syracuse (N.Y.) Onondaga Central's Michael Hart eight years ago.

The score was his 65th of the season - and certainly the most difficult. The opponent, Manvel High, keyed on Gray throughout the game. And Gray left briefly in the first half with a shoulder injury.

Gray, known as a humble star, was quick to credit others.

"The record means a lot because I couldn't do it alone," he told reporters afterward. "Breaking a record like that takes a team effort."

Gray, a 5-11, 190-pound senior headed to the University of Texas, is the No. 1 rated running back in the country, according to Rivals.com.

His efforts against Manvel - he ran for 240 yards in the game - helped Aledo capture a third straight state title.

His score represented the third significant high school career record to fall this season.

In October, Springfield (Mo.) Hillcrest wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham broke the career mark for receiving yards.

In November, Kenton (Ohio) High quarterback Maty Mauk broke the career mark for passing yards.

Gray came close to topping two other career marks. His 1,232 career points are just 14 behind Hart's total. And his 10,908 yards are good for third place all-time, just 324 yards behind the 11,232 yards gained by the legendary Ken Hall of Sugar Land (Texas) High from 1950-53.

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