Chargers storm back to beat CC Miller, advance to Class 5A DI state semis

BROWNSVILLE — The Brownsville Veterans Memorial Chargers woke up in the fourth quarter as they outscored Corpus Christi Miller 28-0 in the quarter to accomplish an amazing comeback to capture the Class 5A DI Region IV title 35-28 in front of a raucous crowd at Sams Memorial Stadium Friday night.

Chargers senior athlete Gilbert Trillo carried multiple defenders into the end zone to score a 22-yard touchdown with less than two minutes to cap off a comeback that featured four touchdowns by quarterback Storm Montoya and timely defensive stops.

“We had the blockers,” Trillo said on his game-clinching touchdown run. “Coach let us call that actual play. He trusted and the blockers did everything for me and I walked in.”

Brownsville Veterans running back Gilbert Trillo carrying the ball Friday in the Class 5A DI regional championship game at Sams Stadium in Brownsville. (Andrew Cordero/Special to The Monitor)

It was not like the Chargers were being played off the field by the visiting Buccaneers despite entering the fourth quarter down 28-7 after surrendering a touchdown that bounced awkwardly into the hands of Miller receiver Corey Holmes.

Gilbert Trillo leveled a receiver in the end zone only for the ball to bounce up and into the hands of Holmes, who had two touchdowns including returning the second-half kick off for a touchdown.

The Chargers responded with Montoya’s first touchdown from 2 yards after going down 21-0.

“We started off really slow,” Chargers offensive coordinator Mike Evans said. “We kept having drive killers and having three turnovers in the first half, that hurts a lot. Second half we scored on every drive, and we executed that is just the biggest difference. Kids knew what to do, it was just execution.”

The Chargers shook off the deflected catch when Montoya scored on a 15-yard run. Evans praised Montoya for being able to shake off turnovers in the first half.

Veterans Memorial Charger Alvin Trevillion (22) hustles with the ball Friday night against Corpus Christi Miller Buccaneers at Sams Memorial Stadium in Brownsville during a Region IV-5A Title Game. (Miguel Roberts/The Brownsville Herald)

“On my mind was just doing this for my seniors, for Brownsville and I had just had to shake it off and turn the page,” Montoya said.

The Chargers picked up two takeaways, the first an interception by safety Eroz Pineda. The junior was all over the ball Friday night.

“It feels amazing,” Pineda said about his pick. “I just saw the ball and it got in my hands.”

Brownsville Veterans defender Mickey Rodriguez tackles Corpus Christi Miller quarterback Jayden Brown (0) in a Region IV-5A DI championship game Sam Stadium on Friday, Dec. 1, 2023, in Brownsville. (Photo courtesy of Sixtum Pictures

Montoya scored from 25 yards and then 1-yard to tie the game. The Chargers recovered a fumble and then would go ahead with Trillo. The senior came up with a big hit to knock the ball out as time expired.

“We had a different game plan going in the second half, coach hyped us up and Sergeant major,” Trillo said. “It was everything, everyone played on point.”

The Chargers are now set to face Smithson Valley in the Class 5A state semifinals at 7 p.m. Friday at Buccaneer Stadium in Corpus Christi.

Photo Gallery:Brownsville Vets pulls out last minute victory over CC Miller 35-28 to advance to State Semifinal