Before Sonora, Ingram, Ballinger, Brady, Bangs, and Grape Creek opened District 2-3A play this past Friday night, the football sportswriters and many fans all agreed there would be little drama in the opening week games.
The Broncos were picked to trounce Ingram. The Bearcats would defeat Brady. The Eagles would continue their streak of losing district games. When I checked the scores at halftime, the Bulldogs were up on the Bearcats 28 to 13, Bangs was trailing the Eagles and our game was tied at six all.

The Broncos won the toss and deferred. On the sixth play of the Warriors’ opening drive, the center snapped the football over the quarterback’s head. Aidan Villanueva recovered for the Broncos. Six running plays later, Hunter O’Banon scored the first Bronco touchdown with 7:49 on the clock. Villanueva tried the counter play for the two point conversion, but the Warriors stopped him short.

The teams traded punts. The Warriors’ next drive ended when Fernando Gonzalez intercepted for the Broncos. This Bronco drive ended with a turnover on downs.

The Warriors responded with their best drive of the first half. Despite another high snap, freshman Aiden Rendon (296 yards passing, 2 TDs, 62.5% completion percentage) completed a touchdown pass to freshman Kye Hightower. They unsuccessfully tried to kick for the PAT.

At 5:05 left in first half, the score was tied at 6 apiece. O’Banon was given the ball on most of the plays in the Broncos’ next drive. When it appeared that he would score, Rendon was able to strip the football from O’Banon. Ingram recovered at their four yard line. The half ended with the teams tied at 6.
Buitron was intercepted at the six minute mark of the third quarter. Ingram’s first play was a short pass from Rendon to junior Ashton Cross. Cross raced and weaved 65 yards for a Warriors’ touchdown. The PAT kick was no good. The score was 12 to 6 with 5:47 left in the third.

The next drive belonged to Sean Mungia. He gained over 20 yards on a screen pass and followed up with a tackle-breaking run for the Broncos’ second touchdown. O’Banon ran for the go ahead PAT. At 5:05 left in the third quarter, Sonora had the lead back at 14 to 12.

The momentum had changed to the Broncos’ favor. The Bronco defense stepped up and completely shut down the Ingram run game and covered their receivers. Buitron fielded a Warrior punt at the Broncos’ 47 yard line and sprinted 53 yards for a special teams’ touchdown. O’Banon followed with the two point run to make it 22 to 12 at the 3:19 mark in the third.

In the fourth quarter, the Broncos scored twice. Buitron completed a 35 yard touchdown pass to Gonzalez. The PAT pass was no good making the score 28 to 12.

Ingram’s last real chance to get back in the game ended when their young center once again snapped the ball over Rendon’s head and Jacob Perez recovered Ingram’s sixth turnover. Buitron scored the last touchdown with 1:09 left on a quarterback keeper. Giovanni Gamez ran in untouched for the two point conversion making the final score 36 to 12.

Passing: Buitron completed 7 of 20 passes for 135 yards. He threw for one touchdown and had two passes intercepted.

Rushing: O’Banon carried 20 times for 131 yards and one touchdown. Mungia ran 14 times for 118 yards and one touchdown. Buitron had nine touches for 71 yards on one touchdown.

The Broncos rushed as a team for 346 yards.

Receiving: Gonzalez caught one pass for a 135 yard touchdown Carroll had three catches for 45 yards. Mungia snagged two passes for 37 yards. Jonah Galvan caught one pass for 12 yards.

Leading Tacklers: Villanueva 11, Edgar DeLuna 10 and Gage Owen 10.

The Broncos(3-3,1-0) host the Brady Bulldogs (3-2,1-0) Friday night for a 7 PM home game. It’s 7on7 Appreciation Night.

Last Thursday night in Ingram, the 7th grade Colts lost 20-14. The 8th grade lost 36-22.

At home, the JV Broncos took care of business with a 47-0 win over the Warriors, bringing them their 4th shut out for the season.

The Colts play in Bronco Stadium this Thursday, while the JV Broncos (6-1) hit the road to Brady.