The air was crisp and clear; the moon was full; the stands were packed; the teams were anxious. Tonight would be a classic example of Texas high school football at its best: two small West Texas towns that have been football rivals forever, playing for what should be the deciding game in the race for district champ with two games left in the regular season.
Coach David Wood said it would be the spread against old school-the running game that Littlefield has used for, gosh, the last thirty or forty years. The spread won. And won big. And could have won even bigger except that the Littlefield coach chose to let the clock run out for the last 1:22 of the game, literally let the clock run down; both teams just stood there and waited for the scoreboard to show zeros.
We score early in the first quarter when Cooper Washington runs the ball in, and it was obvious the Mules are pumped. Soon after, however, Littlefield scores but doesn’t connect on the two-point conversion attempt, so the score is 7-6. But that’s okay because on the play right after the kick-off Isaac Baca runs 80 yards for another touchdown. But then the Mules two-point attempt is blocked, Littlefield manages to grab the ball and sure enough, runs it all the way to the end zone. They only get two points for their trouble, but they also get the ball back as we have to kick to them again, like with a safety. The score is now Mules 13, Wildcats 8.
The second quarter is exciting because Isaac Baca makes another touchdown, an interception by Eric Orozco is turned into a TD by Ryan DeLeon, and the score is 27-8. Saul Elizalde makes yet another good interception, but the quarter ends before they can turn that one into a score.
Early in the third quarter Eric Orozco makes another interception and Cooper Washington carries it in for the touchdown, the point after is missed and the score is 33-8. Littlefield’s next possession is ended when we hold them on fourth down and follow that with Eric Orozco making a great catch which is turned into another touchdown by Jr. Baca. Juan Sanchez grabs a Littlefield fumble after that and by now the Littlefield stands are beginning to thin out.
The fourth quarter starts with the Mules missing a chance to make a touchdown but they do get off a good field goal, and the score is now 43-8. Notice the Littlefield score is still just 8 points… and behind us Roland Ambriz, Joe Ambriz, Sergio Leal, and Francisco Ybarra are lovin’ it, hoping for one more touchdown to settle the score for all the abuse they took from Littlefield when they were frustrated fighting Mules in the past. But even when that didn’t happen, they were all smiles at the final whistle.
But everyone was lovin’ it. The standing room only fans along the fence were joined by the fans in the stands who also stood for most of the game. Everyone stayed for the school song. People roamed around on the track and the field with silly grins on their faces. No one-other than the Littlefield side-seemed in any hurry to leave the scene of glory.
So, the boys are back. And they must stay back to make sure they win the next two games. It’s not over till the last buzzer sounds, even if right now it seems like it’s a done deal. River Road comes to town next Friday. You might want to be there to watch the Mighty Mules work their magic again.