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Week 9 Big 7 Football Roundup

Diamondbacks need bounce-back win

Progress Times photo by Mario Magallon

As we get closer to the season finale of RGV football, the Big 7 football playoff picture is becoming more evident. Several schools are on the cusp of elimination; some are clawing their way back into the conversation, and others are pondering seeding. Sharyland Pioneer, the last undefeated Big 7 Team, dropped their first game last week in a shootout with the Roma Gladiators. La Joya area schools hope to climb back from the abyss and Mission area schools, Mission High and Mission Vets, and Sharyland High are teetering on the edge. With so much at stake, this week promises to be explosive.

The Juarez-Lincoln Huskies (0-7, 0-4) faced off against the Edinburg Vela Sabercats (6-1, 3-1) last night, hoping to snap their extended losing streak. Results from that game were not available at the time of printing.

The Sharyland Rattlers (3-4, 0-2), searching for their first district win, will travel to Tom Landry Hall of Fame Stadium in Mission to take on The Mission Veterans Patriots (3-4, 1-1) tonight in the Big 7 game of the week. Check out our game of the week preview for more information about that game.

Let’s preview tonight’s remaining Big 7 games:

 Edinburg (2-5, 2-0) @ La Joya (0-6, 0-2)

The winless La Joya Coyotes will host the 1st-place Edinburg Bobcats tonight. The Coyotes are on the brink of playoff denial. A win tonight would pause that scenario, if only for one more week. Running back Maurico Mendoza will have to shoulder the offensive load tonight for the Coyotes to have a chance. The Coyote defense will have to contain Bobcat running back Ryen Abrego (12th) and quarterback J.T. Santa Maria (11th) on the ground to keep this game competitive.


Mission (2-5, 0-2) @ Economedes (0-7, 0-2)

This season has been perplexing for the Mission Eagles, who travel to Richard R. Flores stadium in Edinburg to battle the winless Edinburg Economedes Jaguars. The Eagles possess one of the most talented offenses in South Texas but have struggled to finish games and score points in crucial moments. Quarterback Diego Salinas (11th) and running back Thomas Aparicio (11th) average over 300 yards a game, but that hasn’t translated to wins. Two back-to-back losses vs Edinburg schools now have the Eagles fighting for their playoff lives with only 3 weeks left. If the Mission offense wins the 4th quarter and slows down Jaguars running backs Daniel Delgadillo and Chris Perez, expect them to win their first district game.

Palmview (2-5, 0-4) @ Mcallen High(5-2, 2-2)

The Palmview Lobos, who travel to McAllen Veterans Memorial Stadium to face off against the McAllen Bulldogs tonight, are eager to save face and reverse their luck after a winless start to their district campaign. The Lobos lost their homecoming game last week to a resurgent Rio Grande City Rattlers squad (3-4, 2-2) by a sizable margin. The Lobos will try desperately to secure a marquee win tonight versus one of the best teams in Valley 5A football. Expect offensive skill players like running backs Jose Guerra (12th), Kyle Bazan (11th), and Angel Gallegos (12th) to carry the Lobos offense if they want a shot at their first district win.

Quarterback Mateo Garcia’s (11th) first-half performance against the Rattlers last week leaves hope that the Lobo offense can be two-dimensional if needed. Defenders like Abram Garcia (12th) and Leonidas Chapa (10th) will have to stop dynamic Bulldog running back Jayden Herrera (12th) early and often to give the offense more possessions and limit the explosive Bulldog offense. If that happens, the Lobos can recreate last year’s 7-3 magic and possibly escape with a huge road victory.












PSJA SW (1-6, 0-2) @ Pioneer (6-1, 1-1)

After last week’s heartbreaking loss to the undefeated, district-leading Roma Gladiators, the Sharyland Pioneer Diamondbacks will look to rebound against the PJSA Southwest Javelinas tonight at Richard S. Thompson Stadium in Mission. The Diamondbacks’ hopes of an undefeated season were shattered in last week’s wild 4th quarter. Uncharacteristic mistakes from quarterback Julian Valdez (12th), the district leader in completion percentage, overshadowed his 328 yards of offense and three touchdowns. Roma’s 511 total rushing yards and 7 rushing touchdowns heightened those mistakes. If the Diamondbacks want to bounce back and realize their goal of a deep playoff run, Leo Espinoza Jr (12th) and Julian Valdez (12th) can’t do it alone. Contributions from front seven personnel, like linebackers Rolando Gonzalez (12th), Marcus Rauda (11th), and defensive lineman Michael Lugo (12th) will be necessary to get the Diamondbacks on track with a victory in preparation for their impending showdowns with the Rival Sharyland Rattlers (3-4, 0-2) and undefeated PSJA Memorial Wolverines (7-0, 2-0).


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