Story and photo by Beto Urias
The Eagles jumped right into a State qualifying tournament at the first of the season performing very well. We could all see that our boys had the talent if not more than some of the other teams but a mistake here and there is enough to keep you out. Their second attempt at State was in Sonora and they definitely should’ve taken that one but a drop out of one of the teams put the Eagles up against the best team in the tournament and they lost the first game by a TD. The Eagles ripped apart the other 2 teams that they played. We had an injury to Aaron Urias that required 5 stitches to his left eye when he was elbowed.
Coach Gibson knew our boys had the will to win and made some phone calls to try and get them into another State qualifying tournament which was successful, and this time the tournament was held in Rockport. Our boys knew that they would be facing bigger schools and knew that they were going to have to play at a top level. The very 1st team the Eagles played was against Rockport. Rockport had beaten everyone in the area and were favorite to win it all. Our boys fought hard and beat Rockport and after the game was over, the coaches and players from other schools came up to our team and congratulated them because no one had beaten them. We had an injury to Damien Tarango in this game (an ac separation).
We had freshmen coming in to play and help the team and they did a great job. The Eagles stuck together and made it to the championship only to be told that their game against Rockport didn’t count! and the only way they could quality for State was to score 30 plus points in their last game! The Eagle coaches and team were advised of this during Halftime of That game! The odds were stacked against he Eagles but our boys kept their composure, and played as a team and got the job done scoring 30 more points in the 2nd half of the game. The Eagles played with blood, sweat, tears, and guts. Our boys were headed to State in College Station for the 2nd year in a row.
While at the State tournament the Eagles met up with a 4A school Bay City in their 1st game. Bay City looked intimidating with their size and speed but the Eagles stood tall, held their ground and beat Bay City.
Game 2 was against another 4A school Wimberly. Again Wimberly was bigger and were also pretty fast but our Eagles soared and played really good football and beat them.
Game 3 was against a 3A school White Oak. White Oak matched up pretty good against the Eagles. It looked like to me that the Eagles did not play to their potential in this game. Maybe a little tired or over confident, not really sure. White Oak barely beat the Eagles. After the game the Eagles ended up tied with Bay City having the same record so the judges went to the score card. Since the Eagles scored more points than Bay City in all their games, The Eagles were Champions in their pool and made the Championship bracket for Friday morning.
On Friday morning the Eagles faced Hitchcock, definitely bigger and faster. Eagles tried their best and fought hard but came up short and were eliminated from the tournament. All the Eagles supporters that were there as well as Eagle fans around Texas were in full support and were very proud of our boys. Just making it to the State Tournament is a huge accomplishment in itself, and to win 2 games was fantastic!!! Awesome season for our Van Horn Eagles 7 on 7 football team.