Several RGV teams took the field Friday and Saturday during the area round of the Texas high school football playoffs. Only two teams punched their ticket to their respective regional semifinals, with the other seven Valley teams in action seeing their seasons come to an end.
CLASS 6A DI
SAN ANTONIO BRENNAN 36, PSJA HIGH 14: At Pharr, PSJA High’s comeback bid fell short against San Antonio Brennan, with the visiting team scoring a pair of fourth-quarter touchdowns to ice the game.
Brennan drew first blood during the opening quarter, but the Bears answered right back with a 16-yard touchdown run from junior running back Jorge Alanis to make it 7-7 after one.
A pair of second-quarter touchdowns put Brennan up 21-7 at the break, but a 10-yard rushing touchdown by senior quarterback Jaime Lopez during the third brought PSJA High within one score heading into the final period.
PSJA High’s comeback attempt ended there, with Brennan using a pair of fourth-quarter touchdown runs to secure the victory and end the Bears’ season.
PSJA High finishes the year 8-4 overall, capturing its first district title since 2019 and winning its first playoff game since 2008.
LAREDO UNITED 58, SAN BENITO 42: At Corpus Christi, the Greyhounds fell in shootout with the District 30-6A champion Longhorns on Saturday, ending their season in the Region IV-6A DI area round.
Trailing by two scores, the Greyhounds defense came up with a much-needed turnover to start the second half, cutting their deficit to seven on a one-yard touchdown run from Aaron Garza.
The touchdown sparked a run of six straight touchdowns between the two teams before a fourth quarter interception by the Laredo United defense ended San Benito’s comeback attempt.
San Benito senior running back Fabian Garcia paced the Greyhounds comeback bid, finishing with 37 carries for 249 yards and four touchdowns.
Laredo United senior quarterback and UTRGV commit Atzel Chavez finished 18-of-21 for 406 yards and five touchdowns, adding 61 yards and three scores on 14 carries.
The Greyhounds end the year 10-2 overall, including a runner-up finish in District 32-6A.
CLASS 6A DII
SAN ANTONIO JAY 27, WESLACO HIGH 14: At Laredo, the Panthers suffered their first loss of the season in the Region IV-6A DII area round, falling to the Mustangs on Saturday at Shirley Field in Laredo.
The Mustangs struck first against the previously unbeaten Panthers, with Micah Roberts taking it in from 10 yards to make it 7-0 during the first quarter. Weslaco High answered right back on a 26-yard touchdown run by quarterback Andres Sepulveda, tying the game at seven.
San Antonio Jay pounced on the Panthers following their touchdowns, scoring back-to-back scores to take a two-score advantage into the break.
Weslaco High cut the game to six on a six-yard touchdown pass from Sepulveda to Jayden Garcia, but the comeback attempt ended their, with San Antonio Jay’s Jackson Gutierrez delivering the dagger with a 23-yard touchdown run during the fourth.
The Panthers finish the season 11-1 overall, winning their first district title since 2018 along the way.
CLASS 5A DI
CORPUS CHRISTI MILLER 49, EDINBURG VELA 28: At Edinburg, the SaberCats hung tough against the Buccaneers before falling behind during the fourth quarter in their area-round playoff matchup at Richard R. Flores Stadium.
Vela running back Jamal Polley scored a 1-yard touchdown to start the third quarter and make it a 28-21 game with Miller in front. Miller then took advantage of SaberCats miscues to score three second-half touchdowns.
Polley finished with 209 yards and three touchdowns. Quarterback Myles Lopez had 185 yards and threw a 28-yard touchdown pass to Jaxson Shupe. Bernabe Gonzalez led the SaberCats with five receptions for 90 yards.
Edinburg Vela ends its season at 10-2 overall. Miller advances to the regional semifinal round to face the winner of Saturday’s area-round playoff game between Harlingen South and Victoria West.
VICTORIA WEST 56, HARLINGEN SOUTH 20: Harlingen South had good moments early in the game as quarterback Dylan Anaya returned from an injury and along with Alvin Edwards and David Sanchez were able to make incursions into the Victoria West side of the field.
However, Victoria West would not be denied as its high-pace offense was able to move the ball at will with quarterback Camden Repper.
Repper, a senior quarterback with plenty of playoff experience, dazzled and constantly made Hawk tacklers miss throughout the first half. Repper took an 80-yard run to the house in the second half to give the Warriors an early 21-0 lead.
The Hawks grabbed a touchdown when Austen Shroyer scored from three yards out, but the Warriors responded when Repper hit Jeret Swanson with a 70-yard pass to set up a rushing touchdown by Zorian Barfield.
Barfield, Repper and Kamauri Montgomery were tough to stop. The trio along with Swanson helped the Warriors build a 56-7 lead before Harlingen South scored late touchdowns to make it 56-20.
Harlingen South’s season ends in the area round for the first time in 10 years. The Hawks have made it to the playoffs in all three seasons under head coach Israel Gonzalez.
CLASS 5A DII
LIBERTY HILL 63, SHARYLAND PIONEER 35: At San Antonio, the Diamondbacks lost a high-scoring affair against the Panthers at Dub Farris Stadium.
Sharyland Pioneer, the District 16-5A DII tri-champion, finishes the 2023 campaign with a 10-2 record.
SAN ANTONIO PIEPER 38, MISSION VETERANS 6: At Laredo, the Patriots didn’t have the firepower to keep up with Pieper, falling on the road.
The Patriots finish 7-5 on the year and as 16-5A DII tri-district champs.