Lytle Pirates set for District opener in Marion

The Lytle Pirates (0-3) travel to Guadalupe County Friday Night to battle the Marion Bulldogs (4-0) in the District 14-3A (Div.I) opener. Lytle is coming off a tough 41-0 loss vs. rival Natalia to conclude non-district play as the Bulldogs are coming off a hard-fought win vs. the Hondo Owls 35-31. The District Showdown is set for 7:30 p.m. at Veterans Stadium.
Marion Outlook
The Marion Bulldogs are picked by all major polls to advance to the playoffs this season, but the question will be in what place. Marion returns eight offensive and seven defensive starters under Head Coach Ryne Miller. Marion is coming off a 5-6 season in which their season came to an end in the Bi-District round of the playoffs.
The Bulldogs rely on a large senior class led by QB Tanner Beakley who passed for over 1700 yards a season ago. This season he has thrown for over 500 yards and 7 touchdowns with 2 INTs on the season.
Looking at the results thus far for the Bulldogs, they started off their season with a 64-0 victory over Austin Hyde before winning 44-26 over the Goliad Tigers. Marion then beat Comfort on the road 35-6 before last week’s 35-31 home win vs. the Hondo Owls. Marion accounted for 393 yards of offense which included a run heavy 317 yards off 43 rushes led by QB Beakley who had 15 rushes for just over 200 yards.
Marion is picked by the Dave Campbell’s Magazine to finish behind Poteet and Jourdanton, but ahead of Randolph, Lytle, Cole and Cotulla. At the present time, Marion and Poteet happen to be playing the best football in the district followed by probably Randolph and Jourdanton.
Lytle Outlook
Lytle will look to respond in their district opener after a tough loss to rival Natalia. Success will have to come with finding some consistency with their young but eager offensive squad led by Freshman QB Luke Estrada who did show some positives at times vs. the Natalia Mustangs. It will also be important for Albert Aguilar, Emanual Garcia and Brandon Adkins to try and find room to get out in space when they touch the football.
Last week, timing was a bit off at times with the QB-receivers which will only improve with time any time you have a young QB who is starting due to injury at the QB position three weeks ago.
Where Lytle does have some veteran leadership is on the line and they will have their hands full vs. a Marion squad that features a pretty talented front. Lytle Head Coach Adrian Trevino and staff will work on a number of different approaches to try and capitalize on Lytle’s talent up front to try and neutralize the Bulldogs attack.
Coach Trevino was asked his thoughts going into the district opener vs. Marion.
“Our focus is to continue to work on the fundamentals this week,” Trevino said. “We saw a number of things on film from last week that we do well and some things that need to be fixed and polished. Our players have done a great job of showing a willingness to learn and it has been good to see the growth of our team week by week. We still have work to do, but I am excited about the future.”
A season ago, the Bulldogs defeated the Pirates in a competitive contest 27-7.
Kick-off is set
Coach Trevino and the Pirates are asking the Lytle Faithful to make the trip to Marion Friday night for the district opener. Be sure to keep an eye out on Lytle ISD Social Media pages for information on how to obtain tickets. The kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. at Veterans Stadium. Best of luck to the Pirates.
By Eric Smith
Staff Writer