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Perez adds silver medal to her remarkable running resume

20111118-Emily-Perez002Four years ago Juarez-Lincoln cross country runner  Emily Perez was like any other freshman athlete. Before cross country meets she was nervous, unsure, intimidated and all, apparently, completely without reason. Last weekend, at the UIL state cross country meet at Old Settlers Park in Round Rock, Perez took the silver prize capping a career almost unheard of for a Valley athlete in any sport as she has qualified for state competition four years in a row. Last weekend, she showed once and for all her fears were unfounded.

“My freshman year I was intimidated a lot,” said Perez. “In every race, big or small I was nervous. This year, mentally I’m strong. I have a shot of making the national and my freshman year I would have thought it was impossible.”

Even as recently as last year Perez may have thought making nationals was improbable as she finished fifth in state competition. However, this year is proving to be the breakout culmination of a running career whose accomplishment has extended beyond just its own success.

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Laredo United closes the season on Sharyland

20111118-Sharyland-v-LaredoUnited-LEG6068nsOn south Texas ranchland, when a longhorn and a rattlesnake cross paths it usually results in a fight to the death. At Laredo’s Student Activity Center (the SAC) Friday night, it was a fight to the gridiron death as the Laredo United Longhorns’ and the Sharyland Rattlers’ paths crossed in the first round of the Class 5-A Division 1 playoffs. The winner earning the right to move on to the next round of the state playoffs  and the loser having their otherwise successful season come to a much too sudden end.

In what turned out to be an unusually cool evening in Bordertown Laredo, it didn’t take the Longhorns long to get their vaunted offense on track once they received the opening kickoff. With 3,000 yard passer Alec Salas at quarterback, they methodically drove the ball 80 yards down the field on their very first possession.  Running back Derek Esparza capped off the Longhorn drive when he scored his first touchdown of the game and quickly gave the Longhorns a 7 – 0 lead.

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Sharyland takes on Laredo United in bi-district playoff

20111111-Sharyland-v-McHi-Football_dy-012Sharyland is the lone school in the Mission-La Joya area to make the football playoffs this year. Though any of the other local schools would be thrilled with a 9-1 record, the Rattlers are still nursing their ego after suffering a 28-14 loss to undefeated McAllen Memorial three weeks ago. The game ended a three-year win streak for the Rattlers.

Sharyland came back with another victory last week as they took down the McHi Bulldogs, 38-21, in the team’s final game of the regular season. Big Red finished their regular season the same way they began it, with a win. Although there was very little at stake in the Rattler’s matchup against the McHi Bulldogs, both teams having secured their playoff spots, both still played hard in what was a tune-up for two programs undoubtedly peeking past each other.

Sharyland stalwart quarterback Tres Barrera, did most of the damage with three touchdown runs and throwing 18 completions on 22 attempts for 227 yards and two touchdown passes. Barrera has been the picture of consistency for the Rattlers this year and much of the team’s post-season plans and hopes rest on his shoulders.

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Volleyball playoffs in full swing

20111104_TEAM_SHARYLAND_Volleyball_dy-001Rattlers slide past Laredo United

Last Monday High School volleyball playoffs kicked off with the Sharyland Rattlers (31-14) defeating Laredo United for the 30-5A Bi-District Championship which the Rattlers won in four games.

Sharyland started slow, dropping the first game 17-25 and going down by 5 at the start of the second game. But once the lady Rattlers settled in they returned to the form that made them such an imposing team all year winning the next three games 25-17, 25-15, 25-20.

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Shary takes down upset-minded McHi

20111103-sharyland-v-mchi-football-dy-084-smallIn reality, Thursday night’s season finale between the McHi Bulldogs and the Sharyland Rattlers was merely a tune-up game for next week’s bi-district matchups. After all, the Bulldogs are solidified as the second seeded DII representative while the Rattlers will be the top seed for DI. However, there were a couple things learned from Shary’s 38-21 win.

First, the Rattlers can withstand a comeback. Fred Sanchez’s squad led 28-7 after three quarters but the Bulldogs (6-4, 4-3) made rallied with two quick touchdowns minutes into the fourth quarter. Despite giving up some big plays—including an onside kick after the first touchdown—the Rattlers smoothly responded with ten points behind the leadership of Tres Barrera to seal the win.

Second, Sharyland (9-1, 6-1) might be able to withstand a comeback but it will need to learn the knockout punch if it wants to make a decent playoff run in the next couple weeks. The Rattlers started the game off slow, allowing McHi to move the ball easily on its first two drives. Though the received the early wakeup call, Shary seemed to dose off in the third quarter and early in the fourth when they fumbled twice, gave up an onside and got burned for two deep touchdown passes.

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Palmview’s playoff hopes lost

20111028-Palmview-v-McHi-Football-dy-075-SmallFor the second year in a row, the Palmview Lobos’ playoff hopes have been dashed after a promising start. The Lobos fell big to McHi, 31-17.

Manny Flores’ team started district off with high hopes after they won their first two games over Mission and rival La Joya. The two wins showed a dual-quarterback offense and talented receivers. However, as in times past, Palmview struggled to play with the district’s powerhouses. The Lobos have lost four straight since their win over La Joya, only one of which was within ten points.

The final game for the red and black will be next Friday verses the Memorial Mustangs. McAllen Memorial will be looking to complete an undefeated run in district to obtain sole ownership of the 30-5A championship. On Friday the team took down the Donna Redskins.

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CoverageAreaThe Progress Times is the hometown newspaper for the local communities of Mission, Sharyland, Alton, Palmview, La Joya and surrounding areas in Western Hidalgo County. We have a staff of veteran reporters who work diligently every week to bring our readers the latest news as it affects their hometown area and people.

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