BOSQUE BATTLE BEGINS

in Football

With two games from the all-Bosque County six-man District 12-1A, DI featured, Cranfills Gap & Iredell posts wins in The Sports Buzz Games of the Week

Thanks in part to the Covid pandemic, The Battle for the Bosque – the mythical Bosque County Six-Man Football Championship in the all-Bosque County District 12-1A, Division II –proved to be a bit anti-climatic last season. After all, Kopperl decided to cancel its season, Iredell shut down its team before district, and Cranfills Gap struggled to stay on the field due to Covid and injuries.

But if all goes well, the 2021 season could turn out to be something special. And if the non-district results can serve as an indication, the district title could be completely up for grabs. With that said, The Sports Buzz decided to be on location for both District 12-1A, Division II games last Friday, making both matchups The Sports Buzz Games of the Week.

While the defending district champion Morgan Eagles remained idle with an open date, the Battle for the Bosque began. And after being unable to finish the season in 2020, the surprising Cranfills Gap Lions established themselves as a team to be reckoned with in the all-Bosque County six-man football league.

CRANFILLS GAP 84, WALNUT SPRINGS 62

WALNUT SPRINGS — Senior Cruz Flores scores seven touchdowns and threw for another as the resurgent Cranfills Gap Lions pounced on the Walnut Springs Hornets in the fourth quarter to run away with an inspired 84-62 road victory in the District 12-1A, DII opener last Thursday night at Hornet Field.

Trailing 48-36 early in the third quarter, Walnut Springs battled back 56-48 lead just before the fourth quarter. But the Lions (1-0 in district, 4-3 overall) responded with 22 unanswered points to quickly re-establish the lead they would never relinquish.

“It came down to who wanted it more, and we stepped up to win the fourth quarter,” Cranfills Gap head coach Adam Carroll said. “Juan Berumen made a great interception that flipped momentum, and the Lions never looked back. I was very proud of the perseverance we showed all night.”

Scoring six rushing touchdowns, Flores ran for a season-high 376 yards on only 19 carries, completed two of three passes for 57 yards and a score, as well as hauling in a 12-yard scoring strike from junior Aiden Doty. Flores also led the Lions with 22 tackles.

“It’s disappointing to lose a game like that after trailing for most of the game and then tying the score in the third quarter to give us a chance to pull it out,” Walnut Springs head coach Lonnie Flippen said. “A couple of turnovers really hurt, but all the credit needs to go to the Flores kid. He broke loose on two touchdowns when it looked like four or five Hornets were on him. We just need to learn to finish.”

Behind Flores, sophomore Blake Allen rushed for two touchdowns and hauled in a 19-yard scoring strike, while Aiden Doty caught a touchdown passes and threw for two more. Defensively, Elias Marquez Peter contributed 13 tackles, while freshman Eli Whitmer and Allen collected 10 takedowns apiece.

For Walnut Springs (0-1, 2-5), freshman Josue Ontiveros tossed three touchdown passes, Jordan Ontiveros scored three times and Diego Muniz found the end zone twice. Muniz led the Hornets with 125 yards rushing while Josue Ontiveros passed for 142 yards. Defensively, Anthony Muniz led Walnut Springs with 11 tackles.

“We know what we have to do to even think about being in the playoffs, and that’s win out,” Flippen said. “It’s not over yet, but the hill is getting a little steeper each week.”

IREDELL 56, KOPPERL 6

IREDELL — Using a lethal passing attack, the Iredell Dragons struck quickly and kept scoring on their way to an overwhelming 56-6 victory over the young and inexperienced Kopperl Eagles in the district opener for both teams last Friday night at Dragon Stadium.

Junior Preston Robinson tossed four touchdown passes, connecting with freshman Duece Paul twice, while Tag Nystel scored twice as the Dragons (1-0, 3-2) ended the game with 3:46 remaining in the third quarter by virtue of the 45-point mercy rule.

“We knew coming in we needed to set the tone, and we did,” Iredell head coach Luis Guereca said. “We executed well, and we played defense very well. I’m definitely proud of the guys, especially considering the ups and downs we’ve gone through so far this season. We ran into some adversity, but the kids are responding well. So, I’m very pleased with tonight.”

Although both teams were squaring off early, the Dragons finally got on the scoreboard when Robinson connected with Nystel for a 56-yard catch and run to put Iredell on the scoreboard with 5:32 left in the first quarter to open a 26-point scoring spree.

Kopperl (0-1, 0-5) finally got on the scoreboard when Anthony Johnson cashed in on a five-yard touchdown run. But Iredell went on to score 26 more unanswered points, building a 46-6 advantage before halftime.

In the meantime, the Eagle defense shut down the Kopperl attack as Robinson led Iredell with 15 tackles, followed by sophomore Payton Murphy with nine, and Paul with eight.

“The game didn’t go the way we would’ve liked, but we continue to grow and learn each week,” Kopperl football first-year head coach Aaron Maxwell said. “We’re proud of the boys and their determination to improve each week and to compete.”

Photos by SIMONE WICHERS-VOSS

©2021 Southern Cross Creative, LLP. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.