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September 27, 2021

CLEAN SWEEP

in Football

Taking their lumps in Class 1A non-district matchups, Bosque County six-man teams suffer sweep of defeats in district dress rehearsals; Jonesboro, Abbott climb state poll

While several Heart of Texas six-man football squads strengthened their positions in the state rankings, others continued to search for answers as they prepared to open district competition.

At the top of the Class 1A, Division I state rankings, the third-ranked and undefeated Jonesboro Eagles help off Saint Jo, 64-50, while the fifth-ranked Abbott Panthers remained undefeated with an overwhelming 59-8 home victory over Keene.

But after experiencing the agony of defeat in an unprecedented week of disappointment, the all-Bosque County District 12-1A, Division II goes into one more round of non-district games without a single squad owning a winning record.

With the Kopperl Eagles taking the week off with an open date, the other four Bosque County six-man squads suffered defeats during Week 5. Heading into their final non-district tune-up this week, all five teams will be looking to turn things around before opening district play.

BLUFF DALE 50, IREDELL 0

Coming into the game riding a high, the Class 1A, Division II Iredell Dragons proved to be no match for Bluff Dale as the Bobcats clawed their way to an overwhelming 50-0 victory by virtue of the 45-point mercy rule just after halftime to spoil homecoming night in Iredell last Friday.

“Definitely not the way we planned,” Iredell head coach Luis Guereca said. “Our defense played well early. But poor execution on offense put us in a bind, and we could not recover. This is a game that we have to learn from, and we just need to work on getting better each week.”

Using a 36-point second quarter to build an insurmountable lead, Bluff Dale (3-1) limited the Dragons to 39 yards of total offense. Defensively, sophomore Jaime Najera led Iredell (2-2) with nine tackles, followed by freshman Walker Johnson with five and freshman Deuce Paul with three.

CHEROKEE 60, CRANFILLS GAP 35

Despite a four-touchdown performance by senior running back Cruz Flores, the Cranfills Gap Lions suffered their second straight loss as the Cherokee Indians pulled away late for a convincing 60-35 victory last Friday night in Cranfills Gap.

The Lions (2-3) opened up the scoring with junior quarterback Aiden Doty connecting with senior running back Cruz Flores with a 52-yard scoring strike. But Cherokee (2-2) responded by scoring 22 unanswered points to build a 22-7 advantage before halftime.

But Cranfills Gap rallied in the third quarter as Flores caught two more touchdown passes from Aiden Doty and ran for another, while sophomore Blake Allen powered into the end zone for a score. Although the Lions trailed by only three going into fourth quarter, Cherokee scored 22 unanswered points to put the game away.

“Too many self-made mistakes cost us opportunities in the first half of getting into the end zone,” Cranfills Gap head coach Adam Carroll said. “We did a good job of coming back in the third quarter. However, poor tackling and cramps would set in during the fourth quarter. We have to work on tackling and getting in better shape before district.”

Leading the Lions offensive attack, Flores caught eight passes for 192 yards and two touchdowns while finishing with 118 yards rushing and another score. Aiden Doty completed 11 of 19 passes for 202 yards and three scoring strikes.

Defensely, Flores led Cranfills Gap with 10 tackles, followed by Allen with eight takedowns and an interceptions, freshman Eli Whitmer with six tackles, freshman Juan Berumen with three and junior Haydyn Kirby with two and an interception.

COVINGTON 41, WALNUT SPRINGS 26

Playing before a overflowing homecoming crowd, the Class 1A, DII Walnut Springs Hornets were unable to give their fans something to celebrate as the Class 1A, DI Covington Owls pulled away in the second half for a 41-26 non-district win last Saturday night.

“The Hornets were unable to pull out a win in front of a large homecoming crowd,” Walnut Springs head coach Lonnie Flippen said. “I have never liked homecoming games due to all of the distractions. It’s difficult to convince the boys that it’s just a ball game for them and a coming home for everyone else.”

After the Hornets (2-3) built an early lead, Covington scored to jump out in front with eight seconds left before halftime, then opened the third quarter with back-to-back unanswered touchdowns to take control of the game.

Anthony Muniz scored twice for the Hornets on a 27-yard run and a 20 yard pass from Diego Muniz, and Jordan Ontiveros cashed in on a 12-yard run in the second quarter before Bryan Chavez came off the bench and led the Hornets in their last scoring drive, tossing an 18-yard scoring strike to Pablo Gonzales.

“Chavez was injured last year and is trying to come back, but his playing opportunities are very limited at this time,” Flippen said. “I was very proud of his leadership and his ability to lead the team to the end zone, even though it was too late to mount a comeback.”

Diego Muniz led the Hornets with 80 yards rushing and 65 yards passing, while Anthony Muniz added 72 yards on the ground.

“Just like last week, we now have to refocus before traveling to Lingleville to play a very talented Cardinal team,” Flippen said. “I did remind the team that we played these first six games to prepare for the real season. That’s when we will be competing for a playoff spot and the opportunity to put a gold football in the trophy case.”

EDEN 76, MORGAN 28

Still looking for their first win of the season, the Class 1A, DII Morgan Eagles could not keep up with Class 1A, DI Eden as the Bulldogs pulled away for a resounding 76-28 homecoming victory last Friday night.

Despite owning a 16-14 first quarter lead, Morgan (0-4) could not keep the Bulldogs (3-1) out of the end zone. After taking a 34-28 advantage into intermission, Eden piled up 42 unanswered points in the third quarter to wrap up the win by virtue of the 45-point mercy rule.

“The Eagle’s efforts were great in the first half,” Morgan head coach Edward Aviles said. “But a lot of costly mistakes allowed the Bulldogs to take over the game and get a homecoming win. The Morgan Eagles’ efforts were progress in getting better as a team.”

Sophomore Mark Anthony Garcia threw a 30-yard touchdown pass to junior Kason Sims and scored on a 47-yard fumble recovery, while junior Dathen Davenport and junior Adrian Vera-Rico contributed rushing touchdowns.

Defensively, Vera-Rico led the Eagles with 13 tackles, followed by freshman EJ Aviles with six takedowns.

Photos by SIMONE WICHERS-VOSS

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