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Large cats battle it out as Floresville Tigers fall to Panthers
Tiger Ruben Benavides eludes a Panther in hot pursuit.
Medina Valley 27
FLORESVILLE -- It was billed as a game to decide the district title, but the Tigers fell in a heartbreaking loss to the Medina Valley Panthers 27-13.
After a scoreless first quarter, Medina Valley’s rushing attack seemed to overwhelm the Tiger defense as the Panthers scored twice before the half.
A failed kick and botched conversion attempt brought the score to 12-0 as both teams went into the locker room.
After the half, the Tigers found their rhythm as the tandem threat of Ruben Benavides and Hector Villegas drove Floresville upfield. Villegas would cap off the drive with a 1-yard run to bring the score to 12-7.
Floresville’s defense, led by linebacker John Handowski, disrupted the Panthers’ offense and shut them out in the third quarter. But, as the quarter waned, the Panthers were once again threatening.
The Panthers would score again with 11:01 remaining in the fourth quarter off of an 18-yard pass from Olvera to Haby. The point-after would increase the Panthers’ lead to 19-7.
Undaunted, Colby Shodrock took control of his offense, completing passes and handing off to Benavides, who scored on a 22-yard scamper to bring the Tigers to within 6 points.
Throughout the game, Shodrock would find receivers Jonathon Huber, Hector Villegas, Aaron Laskowski, and John Handowski for a total of 50 passing yards.
Medina Valley would again march upfield with 2:59 left in the fourth quarter to bring the score to 27-13.
Players on the Tiger sidelines stayed involved in the game encouraging their teammates by stating they had been in this situation before and that winning was still possible.
Shodrock led the Tigers all the way to the Panther red zone, but fell short when Floresville failed to convert on a fourth-down situation.
Villegas had 163 yards on the ground on 25 carries with one touchdown. Benavides rushed for 60 yards on 13 carries and a touchdown.
Kyle Bippert and Jonathon Huber would combine for 12 yards of rushing as well.
“These kids gave everything they got like they do every week,” said Coach Jeff Luna. “I’m proud of their effort. It hurts, because they go out there and bust their butts all week and to come out and play like that; I couldn’t be more proud. We made some mistakes against a good football team, but we still got a district championship to play for. We have Kennedy next week so we just need to go in and get back to work.”
The Tigers are now 6-2 overall, and 4-1 in district play. Floresville will play at Kennedy this Friday, Nov. 2, and will close out the regular season at home Friday, Nov. 9. Kickoff for both games is set at 7 p.m.
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