When a football team gets great field position all night and can spring a few big plays, they usually come out on the right side of the scoreboard. The state-ranked Cuero Gobblers benefited all night and walked away from the visiting Beeville Trojans 46-14 in the season opener for both teams last Friday night.
“We didn’t play very well on Friday night...it was a disappointing loss to a very good football team,” said Trojan head coach Chris Soza.
“Our young players need to grow up in a hurry and our veterans need to provide the necessary leadership. We have to do a better job of coaching as a staff and the kids need to do their part.”
The Trojans went three and out on the initial offensive series of the game and put Cuero at midfield. Five plays later it was a 7-0 ball game as running back Troy Ruiz pushed the ball across from three yards out.
The Trojans turned the ball over on their next possession with an interception that set up the Gobblers at their own 49-yard line. A holding call set the Cuero offense back to their own 39 but a 33-yard draw got them right back into the Trojan side of the field. Quarterback Tyler Arndt then hit receiver Robert Armstrong from 27 yards out for the second Gobbler TD of the first quarter. The PAT kick failed but the home team was out front 13-0.
The Trojans did close within one score as Frank Warner scampered five yards at the tail end of an 80-yard Beeville drive for the Trojans’ first score at the 10:25 mark of the second quarter. Freshman kicker Lonnie Jordan made good on his first varsity extra-point to make it a 13-7 game.
The Gobblers returned the kickoff back out to their on 42 to again set themselves up in good field position. It took the Gobblers just two plays as Arndt burst loose on a 55-yard QB draw that ended in the end zone. That made it a 19-7 contest with 9:22 left in the first half.
It was another two-play drive that got the Gobblers their next score. The Trojans recovered a fumble to stop a Cuero drive down at the Beeville 23. Matt Botello jumped on the loose ball at the 18-yard line to give the Trojans the ball. Beeville fumbled it right back to the home team on the very next play to set up the Cuero offense at the Beeville 21.
A 20-yard completion and then a one-yard plunge by Cole Pargmann upped the score to 26-7 with just over four minutes left in the half.
The Trojans did get one more score before half. A 66-yard drive culminated with a 31-yard “belly-bum” run by Val Valdez with just 44 seconds left in the half.
The Gobblers weren’t done though and started their last drive of the half at their own 27 — the worst field position they had all night to start a drive. The first play went for 46 yards as Pargmann got the call on a draw. Three plays later and with only three seconds left on the clock, the Cuero offense pushed across another TD from one yard away. Ruiz got the TD as he bulled his way over from the right side.
The score at the half jumped to 32-14. Beeville failed to score in the second half, turning the ball over on downs deep in Gobbler country once and then failing to convert a fourth and four at their own 33. An interception in the end zone by Gobbler Boothe Jennings also stopped a late Beeville drive. Cuero tacked on a touchdown in each of the final two quarters to make the final a 46-14 victory.
Trojan QB Eric Soza went 10-22-2 on the night for 155 yards passing. It could have been more as several passes were dropped by the Trojan receivers. Soza also led the rushing attack with 73 yards on the night. Val Valdez ran for 62 yards and one touchdown while Warner got 26 yards and one touchdown before leaving the game with an injury right before the half.
Botello led the receiving corps with four catches and 45 yards. Valdez hauled in two aerials for 28 yards. Frank Gutierrez made one catch for 42 yards.
The Beeville defense was led by Botello with five solo tackles and four assists. Linebacker Ryan Ramirez connected for seven tackles and three assists and Chris Parker had four tackles and one sack. Linebacker Nick Waters made the interception for Beeville while compiling three solo tackles and was in on two other stops.
The Trojans travel to West Oso on Friday night to meet the Bears. West Oso is coming off a 32-21 win over Port Isabel in their opener.
“West Oso will be another tough challenge,” said coach Soza.
“They are very fast at the skill positions. They will be multiple on defense and will spread it out on offense. We must do a better job in all facets of the game in order to be successful.”