Karnes City too much for Nixon-Smiley
The Nixon-Smiley defense lines up across from the Karnes City offense during the teams’ district matchup last Friday night. The Badgers defeated the Mustangs 42-0.
Karnes City 42
NIXON -- The downpour of rain didn’t hurt the enthusiasm of the students and fans gathered at Nixon-Smiley High School last Friday night for the team’s first District 15-2A DII game of the year, but it didn’t help the Mustangs either. Nixon-Smiley’s offense managed just 35 yards of total offense, and the Mustangs fell to the Karnes City Badgers by the score of 42-0.
After some confusion about which goal was to be defended, the Mustangs took the opening kickoff, but ended their drive at their own 30-yard line and were forced to punt the ball away.
Karnes City began its first drive of the game from its own 40-yard line, and promptly moved down the field against the Mustangs. K.D. Glenn then capped off the drive with a 32-yard into the end zone, streaking down the Karnes City sideline for a touchdown. The point-after kick was low, however, and the score stood at 6-0 in favor of the visiting team.
The Mustangs started their second drive at about their own 29-yard yard line and moved it out across the 40, but were again forced to punt the ball away.
A decent punt put the Badgers at their own 21-yard line to start, and a good defensive effort led to the Badgers’ only punt of the night to start the second quarter.
The Mustangs took over at their own 35, but were unable to move the ball once again, and eventually punted the ball back to Karnes City. The Badgers started at their own 41, but used a good mix of run and pass to move the ball deep into Mustang territory. The drive ended with 3:55 to play in the half as Badger quarterback Dylan Lopez hit Philip Vaughan in the back of the end zone for a 15-yard touchdown. Glenn ran in the 2-point conversion, and Karnes City led 14-0.
The ensuing kickoff wasn’t handled cleanly by Nixon-Smiley, and the chance at a good return was gone. The Mustangs were held to another three-and-out, but before the team booted the ball away, things went from bad to worse, as the deep snap went right through the wet hands of sophomore punter Tristan Newman. Newman was able to fall on the ball, but possession went over to Karnes City on downs, giving the Badgers a first-and-goal from the Nixon-Smiley 3-yard line. Karnes City needed just one play to score, as Dylan Wright ran in off the left tackle for a touchdown. The point-after kick was good, and the score was 21-0 with 2:41 to play in the half.
The Badgers recovered an onside kick in an attempt to add to the score before halftime, and started their fifth drive of the game at the 50-yard line. Karnes City was working its 2-minute drill, not utilizing a huddle and looking to get it done through the air. The Mustangs played solid defense, though, and the Badgers quickly found themselves in a fourth-down situation. Leading by 21, Karnes City went for it on fourth and nine, but Mustang junior linebacker Garrett Earlywine caught Lopez in the backfield, dragging him to the ground and ending the drive as quickly as it had begun.
The Mustangs took over in Badger territory, but were unable to score before time expired in the half.
The struggles on both sides of the ball continued for the Mustangs in the second half, and the Badgers added to their lead with another 21 points. Vaughan returned an interception 35 yards for the Badgers to start the second-half scoring, and then a pair of rushing touchdowns followed in the fourth quarter. Three John Garcia extra points made the final score 42-0 in favor of Karnes City.
Mustang quarterback Nick Pena completed 2 of 5 passing attempts for no yards. While Justin Ramos pulled in a grab for 4 yards, Newman’s one catch was recorded as a negative 4 yards. Pena ran the ball eight times for 14 yards, Newman had six carries for 12 yards, and Jared Van Auken ran three times for 13 yards.
Earlywine led the Mustang defense with seven tackles and a sack, followed by Justin Ramos with six tackles, and Newman and Logan McMain with five tackles apiece.
The loss drops the Mustangs to 0-4 on the year. Nixon-Smiley will travel to Dilley this week to face the Wolves in their second district game of the year. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m.