The La Vega Pirates have been a picture of domination so far in the Texas High School Football playoffs, outscoring their first two opponents by a score of 129-21.
In each of their first two games they really put the game out of reach by the end of the first quarter, which is exactly what they want to see against these early-round teams.
“It’s just good to set the tone, don’t give them any chance,” Senior Jaelyn Maladdie said. “Don’t give them any hope to win the game. Take their will out early.”
One way they are doing that is pounding people with their lethal running game. They rushed for over 500 yards in their Area round win over Melissa, with Jar’Que Walton and John Richards each rushed for over 100-yards. Add in Ara Raul’s ability to throw and run, and it causes real headaches for the opposing team. Head Coach, Don Hyde, knows though that everything begins and ends up front.
“Our backs are pretty good, but our offensive line is great,” he said. “Our offensive line is the difference in the game. Any time you’ve got skill kids like we’ve got, they’re going to find a seam and they’re going to be dangerous, so it’s our offensive line’s job to give them a seam, and they’re doing a great job of doing that.”
While they have been impressive in the first two rounds the Pirates are all to familiar what can happen if you look ahead, and as they head back to the site of that State semi-final loss, in Frisco, they aren’t taking anything for granted.
“Every game is an important game,” he said. “We can’t start looking too far ahead, because that’s how we end up coming short. Every game is very important, and we’ve got to come out and do our jobs.”
The Pirates and the Wildcats of Paris will kick off at 7:30pm at the Star in Frisco on Thursday night.