REFUGIO, TX — In a Texas UIL 2A barn burner, the No. 5 Refugio Bobcats (7-1, 4-0) defeated the No. 4 Shiner Comanches (7-2, 4-1) 38-27, taking the district lead.
"It means a lot. We have been going back and forth for like several years, so it's a rivalry for sure," said Eziyah Bland, Refugio senior running back and cornerback. "It was a great atmosphere playing at home. It's my last year, so I was already turnt up when I woke up."
Bland led the Bobcats with 295 rushing yards, 3 touchdowns, 4 tackles and an interception against Shiner. His teammate, sophomore Jordan King, added 83 yards on the ground, 2 more touchdowns and 12 tackles.
"Felt great to beat a team that beat us last year and be a part of winning that game," said King, Refugio fullback and middle linebacker.
King adds power at fullback and Bland adds speed, running a 4.5 second 40-yard dash. Both backs are thankful for their linemen creating space.
"They open them up very well," said Bland. "Coach (Drew) Cox does very well in coaching them and we just run behind them."
The Bobcats have a lot of depth on their roster, and Bland will leave the program after this season in good hands.
"It excites me knowing that I am going to graduate and I can come back and watch them," said Bland. "I'm not sure if he really looks up to me, but I kind of guide him and help him."
With two district games left on the schedule, the Bobcats, who moved up one spot in the Dave Campbell's rankings to No. 4 in UIL 2A-DI, are ready for playoffs.
"I feel like we're in a great spot," said Bland. "We came back after that loss against Hitchcock and grew a lot as a team after that loss."
Refugio will travel to Kenedy (4-4, 2-2) this Friday before hosting Ganado (6-2, 2-2) for their final regular season home game.