Devine-Hondo tidbits

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Did anyone honestly think that I could recapitulate this past Friday’s exhilarating Devine-Hondo football game in the only 1,783 words that encompassed the DEVINE BEATS HONDO article? I tried; I really did. I simply could not make it happen, so here are a few tidbits to go along with that extra cup/pot of coffee.
The 99th meeting between your Devine Warhorses and the Hondo Owls went to the Warhorses who won Friday night’s rivalry matchup 32-29 at Barry Field. Hondo continues to lead the all-time series 60-37-2; it will take a few more games like Friday’s thriller for the Warhorses to narrow that margin.
Dean Bates came to Devine in 1994 as the new Head Coach of the Warhorses. Since ’94, Devine holds a 14-12 advantage. Coach Bates left Devine in 2004 and current Athletic Director Chad Quisenberry took the reigns. In the 16 Battle of the Creek games beginning in ’04, the Horses have a commanding 11-5 lead.
From the Horse’s mouth
“When they first called the play, I knew I was going to be wide open. I took off on my route and I was just thinking, ‘Chad, I’m wide open, hit me’. When I got into the end zone, I was just so excited to have scored my first varsity touchdown in such a big game. It feels amazing to beat Hondo at their home field. It is an amazing way to start district, and I’m excited to see how the rest of district play pans out.”—Brady Cardenas on his 42-yard touchdown reception and winning in Hondo.
“Anytime we beat Hondo it’s a great feeling, especially in such an emotionally charged game. This game was just a preview of what our team is capable of and, if we can eliminate some mistakes, we’ll be district champs for sure.”—Chad Lawson on the victory and future goals.
“Before the snap, I was pumped just think about blocking it. As I ran toward the kick, I knew I was going to block it. It feels great to get the win against Hondo in their home place, especially because it was my last year to be able to play them. It feels great to get a win with my brothers on the field.”—Tristan Ortiz on the blocked PAT after Hondo’s last touchdown, and playing in Hondo for the last time.
“It felt great to get back on the field with my brothers. Our intensity was electric, and that win got everyone pumped up.”—Donavon Camacho on his return from injury and the exciting feeling on the field after the game.
“When they ran the option to my side, my assignment was to cover the pitch man to take him out of the play. I knew exactly when it would happen because of their fullback’s alignment. That play has been Hondo’s favorite play all season, and I wanted to take that away from them.
It feels great to start district off 1-0 and to beat Hondo. I knew we could do it as long as we kept our heads straight. We went in there with all the confidence in the world and came back to Devine victorious.”—Blaine Miller on his defensive prowess and belief in his teammates.
Hackebeil stuffs Owl
After a Hondo interception on Devine’s initial drive of the game, Hondo faced a 4th and short at the Warhorse 7 ½-yard line. The Owls went for the first down on a fullback dive right at the heart of Devine’s defense.
Warhorse linebacker Jayce Hackebeil was not having any of that. Hackebeil read the play perfectly to stuff fullback Carlos Lewis head-on at the eight for no gain. It was textbook execution from the pre-snap read all the way through the completion of the tackle.
Zack Bocanegra, Brady Cardenas, Blaine Miller, and Tristan Ortiz joined in on the fun just to make sure Lewis was not able to squirm free for a first down.
Baseball anyone?
It is playoff time in the MLB and those who saw the unusual 2-0 score at the end of the first quarter probably thought of how that score more resembled a baseball score. The quirky score quickly changed in the second quarter, however. Both teams’ offenses began to heat up with five combined touchdowns in the frame. Luckily, Devine won the quarter 3 scores to 2.
New rule pins Warhorses
After Hondo quarterback Brandon Garcia’s third quarter touchdown run put the Owls up 20-17, Devine deep returner Guido Zapata motioned for a fair catch on the kickoff at the 3-yard line. Not so quick, however. A clean catch there and the Warhorses would have been able to start their drive at the 25.
A new rule in high school football this year states if a free kick is caught behind the receiving team’s 25-yard line, the play shall be declared a ‘touchback’ and the next snap of the ball will be at the receiving team’s own 25-yard line. However, in the event of a muffed kick or punt, the next snap will be from where the ball was recovered regardless of which team gains control.
Zapata bobbled and dropped the ball as he was retreating from the five to make the fair catch attempt; however, he recovered the football to maintain possession at the 3-yard line. This is where by rule the Horses had to begin their next drive.
The spirit of the new rule is good and in every player’s best interest. There are in fact fewer injuries on kickoffs resulting in touchbacks versus kickoffs that have a return.
While many in Barry Field were unsure of where to spot the ball after the recovery, the crew on the field new exactly where to place the ball. I heard there were a few side bets going on as the officiating crew gathered to sort out the new rule.
The crew got the call correct by putting the ball on the three-yard line. Those that bet against the ruling could have been spotted going through one of our beverage barns early Saturday morning.
Betting is legal in Texas, right?
Free time
Chad Lawson has many roles with the Warhorses. He is the quarterback on offense, a defensive back on defense, and punts. Oh yeah, he also kicks extra points when the need arises. I wonder what he does with his free time when he isn’t on the field.
“I try to stay as hydrated as possible and cheer for my teammates,” Lawson said. Sounds like good things to be doing during his “breaks”.
“Offensive Coordinator Coach PJ Wells called a great game and we executed the plan well. He did a great job mixing the runs and passes to give them different looks, which kept Hondo off balance. We executed our game plan well. We did make some mental mistakes on a couple of plays that would have resulted in big plays but we overcame them.
Chad Lawson had another great game. This is his offense; he did a great job managing and distributing the ball. He has really been a great leader for us.
Guido made big plays and I was proud of Isaiah Oropeza and Brady Cardenas. Isaiah had his best complete game with two key receptions on offense, and made even more plays on defense and special teams. Brady had a big catch for a touchdown that gave us some big-time momentum.
It was good to have Donovan Camacho return. He had a good second half and made some good runs to seal the game at the end.
Our offensive line did a good job. Kaleb Nira and Truett Barron did a good job filling in for Aaron Rivera who has been out do to a high hamstring pull.”—Coach Gomez
“The kids played extremely hard. They overcame adversity all night, kept believing, and making plays in critical situations.”—Offensive Coordinator PJ Wells
Ex Warhorse player, now coach
“It feels great to win the Hondo-Devine rivalry game. I lost my senior year and it still haunts me. Out of my 15 years in coaching, I remember the Hondo games the most. For some reason winning over there feels better.”—Linebacker Coach/Former Warhorse Tight End Evan Eads
“Every time Devine plays Hondo, it’s a battle. It’s always hard fought. It’s always full of emotion, but to a Warhorse, there’s nothing quite like watching the last few seconds tick down in the game knowing full well there isn’t a darn thing they can do to stop you from beating them at their house. The win felt good!”—Devine Coach and former Warhorse Defensive End/Tight End Jonathan “Bear” Darnell
“I love my wife and I love my granddaughter, but there’s nothing like beating Hondo.”—Special Team Coordinator and former Warhorse offensive guard and linebacker Scott Taylor
Al who?
“It always feels good to get a win. Period. Regardless of who our opponent is a rivalry game always feels better just because there is a little more emotion that goes into the game. And beating Hondo at their home field…it doesn’t get any better!!”—Former Owl quarterback and nose guard, Hondo graduate, and current Warhorse Defensive Coordinator George Villa
Quick pic
I did see one picture posted of the scoreboard at Barry Field that showed the score Devine 32, Hondo 29 with nine seconds remaining in the game. I haven’t seen one, however, with the score at the very end of the game. As I got out my phone in anticipation of taking a photo with no time left on the clock, that thought was hastily squashed.
No sooner did the clock strike “zero”, the scoreboard lights were shut off thereby preventing those who may have wanted scrapbook material the opportunity to do so.
If only I wouldn’t have had to try to put in my correct password two separate times, I may have been lucky enough to get a lasting memory.
Brown Chevrolet role reversal
Brown Chevrolet sponsors audiosportsonline Friday night broadcast’s ‘Keys to the Game’ before the Warhorses kick off. Jimbo and JB briefly talk about what the key to a Warhorse victory is for that night’s game.
After the multitude of fumbles by Devine in the last pre-district game against the Central Catholic Buttons, the key to this game simply became for the Warhorses to hold onto the football.
Although Devine 5-times laid the ball on the fake turf at Barry Field that either team could have gained possession of, it never came back to bite the Horses in the rear end. However, on the second time the Owls coughed it up, Tristan Ortiz scooped it up and sprinted 58 yards for what turned out to be the game-clinching touchdown.
JB’s Brown Chevrolet ‘Key to the Game’ was dead on…I just had it for the wrong team.
The end…
…1,815 words later. Hope your coffee isn’t cold.
By Jerel Beaty
Staff Writer