Tigers double up on Coyotes
Kyle Bippert (11) and Gilbert Ortiz (1) prepare to run a play during the Floresville Tigers’ 28-14 win over Uvalde. Bippert and Ortiz played a big role, as the Tigers kept the ball on the ground and punished the Coyotes en route to the district victory.
FLORESVILLE -- It is no secret that the Tigers like to run the ball, and that is exactly what they did last Friday evening as they pounded on Uvalde for four quarters and celebrated a 28-14 victory at the end of the night.
Senior Gilbert Ortiz made his return to the lineup for Floresville after missing some action due to an injury. He proved to everyone that he was healthy as he ran 25 times for 107 yards and two touchdowns on the night, including a 30-yard run in the opening minutes of the first quarter. Aaron Balles booted the extra point following the Ortiz touchdown, and Floresville led 7-0 with 10:55 left to play in the first.
Midway through the second quarter, sophomore running back Alex Mermea broke loose from 27 yards out, giving the Tigers a 13-0 advantage with 5:59 to play in the half. Balles added the extra point, and the lead was 14-zip.
The Coyotes got on the board with a 62-yard touchdown run with 1:41 to play in the half, but the Tigers responded immediately. Floresville drove down and eventually scored on a 1-yard run from sophomore quarterback Koby Wilkerson, with a mere 24 ticks remaining on the clock. Balles was three-for-three kicking the ball at that point, and the Tigers took a 21-7 lead into the break.
In the early minutes of the second half, the Coyotes added to their score with a 68-yard touchdown run from Zach Sanchez. Michael Cantu kicked the extra point, and the lead was back to a single touchdown for Floresville.
While the Tigers were unable to respond in the third quarter, they added 6 more points on a 2-yard touchdown run from Ortiz. Balles’ extra point made it a 28-14 game, and the Tigers held on from there for the victory.
Floresville had great offensive effort from a number of players, and was led by the 100-plus-yard night from Ortiz. Kyle Bippert ran the ball 10 times for Floresville and nearly reached the century mark, as he accounted for 92 yards. Mermea picked up 73 yards and a score on 11 carries, and Wilkerson ran for 37 paces and the score on eight carries. Wilkerson also completed four passes, hitting Bippert, Mermea, Mark Livesay, and Aaron Laskowski each for plays of 10 yards or more.
The Tiger defense held Uvalde to 263 total yards, and allowed just nine first downs. The Coyotes were picked off once, and lost three fumbles to the Tigers.
The victory puts the Tigers at 5-2 on the season, and 3-1 in district play. This week, Floresville will travel to Castroville to take on the Medina Valley Panthers. Medina Valley is also 5-2 on the season, and is 3-1 in district play. The Panthers’ lone loss came at the hands of Harlandale, just as the Tigers’ did.
Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. at Medina Valley.