Eagles Refuse Refugio 45-24
The Lexington Eagles ruined Refugio’s perfect season and dreams while fulfilling theirs with a 45-24 win. The victory earns the Eagles the right to play Idalou for the state championship Saturday at 4:00 pm in Mansfield. This is the second time Lexington will have played for the title and the first time for Idalou.
Lexington used the bruising runs of Xavier Ward and the passing of Kogan Garrett to top Refugio. Ward rushed for 174 yards on 24 carries and Garrett passed for 174 yards on 12 completions. The Eagle defense tossed in a score and put the offense in excellent scoring position twice.
The coin toss was as usual. Lexington won the toss and elected to defer until the second half. Refugio immediately took the ball and the wind in the first quarter. The Bobcats went on a march immediately from their 49-yard line. Refugio was able to run off 11-plays getting two first downs before the Lexington defense stiffened. The Bobcats drive stalled at the Eagle 24-yard line. A 41-yard field goal gave Refugio a 3- 0 lead with 8:21 left in the first quarter.
Lexington started their first drive from the 16-yard line. Garrett lost six-yards on the first play. Ward went 32-yards on the Eagles’ second offensive play. Two plays later Ward broke open for another 23-yards. Lexington moved to the one where a substitution penalty moved them back to the six. Antonio Martinez toed a 23-yard field goal to tie the game.
Refugio went three and out for the first time this season. Their unusual punt went unreturned as the Eagles took over at their own 20. The Eagles moved the ball with on the ground and in the air. The drive was aided by a roughing penalty against the Bobcats that cost Lexington the abilities of Josh Murray for the rest of the game. On third and 21 at the Refugio 48, Garrett found Rhiem Petterson running a stride ahead of the Bobcat defender. Garrett’s pass was on the money and the defender misplayed the ball. Petterson caught the ball for a 48-yard TD. The PAT kick was blown off course by the wind.
Refugio did not take long to score. After Lexington’s short kick off, Refugio’s Terrence Smith broke into the open on the first play. Petterson came from the opposite side of the field, passing everyone to tackle Smith at the two-yard line. The Bobcats lost three yards on first down, had an incompletion on second down, and a rush for no gain on third down. On fourth down, the Refugio quarterback rolled left and threw back to the right to Lance Koonce for a score. The kick was good and Refugio made the kick to take the lead 10-9.
What followed was an ill-advised decision by the Refugio coach. With 1:34 left in the first half, Lexington called time out as Refugio faced a fourth and four. The Bobcats tried a fake punt, which Lexington stuffed for no gain. Lexington took over the ball on the Refugio 38. Garrett hit Jason Washington with a 32-yard pass down to the six. Ward ran around the left side for six yards and the score. Garrett then threw to Ward for the two-point PAT to give Lexington a 17-10 lead with 1:08 left in the first half. After the kick off, the Eagles’ linebacker, Martinez caused a fumble which Chace Sherrill picked up, dropped, and picked back up as he scurried down to the eight-yard line. Garrett hit Washington with an eight-yard scoring toss. Martinez’ kick made it 24-10 with 0:18 left in the half. Lexington even intercepted another Bobcat pass that was nearly returned for another TD before halftime.
Lexington wanted the ball to start the second half. Refugio wanted the wind at their backs (another bad choice).
The kick off went for a touchback. Lexington moved out the 40-yard line before punting. Refugio took the ball at their 41-yard line. The first play was a swinging gate trick play that went for 1-yard. In just over a minute the Bobcats scored on a 13-yard run by Draigon Silvas up the middle. With the kick the score was 24-17 Lexington. The Bobcat fans were looking for another comeback like they had seen the last two weeks.
Refugio underestimated the resolve of the Eagles. Lexington took the kick off at their 20. Eleven plays later the Eagles were in the end zone on a three-yard run by Ward. With the kick Lexington led 31-17.
What happened next took the wind out of Refugio’s sails and with the play the realization their season was over.
On fourth and 15 Refugio tried a screen pass with the first play of the fourth quarter. Tyler Moerbe stepped into the middle of the screen play intercepting the ball. He returned it 58-yards for a touchdown as he picked up blocks by teammates along the winding journey. Martinez’ kick made the score 38-17 with Refugio losing their composure.
On the ensuing possession, Moerbe knocked down a pass on second down, Anthony Robbins slapped on third down, and the fourth down play was stopped short of a first down. Lexington took over on their own 23. On first down Ward went 29-yards up the left side line. Ward then caught a pass for 16-yards. The plays were wrapped around a 15-yard unsportsmanlike call against Refugio. Ward then caught a looping pass from Garrett over the defense for the final Lexington score of the night.
As the Bobcats lost their composure, a couple of more penalties were damaging to their efforts.
Chance Sherrill led the defensive effort with 15 tackles. Twin Chace had 12 tackles and the fumble recovery. Anthony Robbins had an outstanding game with 14 tackles. Todd Glass, Moerbe, and Brandon Meyer had eight tackles each. Petterson had an outstanding night with an interception to go with his touchdown-saving tackle and TD catch. The entire defense played well, as they stopped a group of extremely talented athletes from Refugio.
The offense did a great job of blocking and Garrett was on the money with his passes. The receivers made some outstanding catches. The Bobcats did not know where and how Lexington was going to attack from play to play.