The game was supposed to be a whole lot closer as Ingleside was 1-0 after a big win over Corpus Christi 4A Miller. However, the Bobcats (3-0) stifled the Mustangs with a tough defense and scored often with a high-powered offense.
Ingleside took the opening kickoff and moved from its 20 to the Cat 48 before being forced to punt. Refugio took over at its 34 and began its initial march for a touchdown. Ten plays later the Bobcats scored on Terrance Smith’s 2-yard run. Eric Martinez kicked the extra point and the Cats were on their way with a 7-0 lead midway in the first quarter.
The Mustangs were again forced to punt on their next two possessions with Refugio finally getting the ball at its 20 near the end of the period and there the Cats started another lengthy scoring drive.
Two plays, one a 17-yard pass play from quarterback Kyle Hendley to Christian Espindola and the other a 33-yard run by Bryan Castellano, were key in keeping the drive alive.
Eleven plays later, Aaron Perez capped the drive by scoring on a keeper from 1 yard out. Martinez notched the PAT and Refugio led 14-0 early in the second quarter.
Ingleside took the following kickoff and on its third play set up to pass. The pass was picked off by Espindola at midfield who returned the ball to the Mustang 18.
Four plays later Espindola added six more points on a 10-yard TD run. The conversion kick was good by Martinez and the score went up to 21-0 with 6:38 left in the half.
The Mustangs took the ensuing kickoff at their 20 and ran three plays. The third play was a pass play and the Mustang quarterback faced a heavy pass rush by Refugio. The ball was batted in the air and into the arms of Jacob Garcia at the Mustang 14. Three plays later the Cats were again on the scoreboard as Hendley hit Travis Martino with a pass on a post pattern good for a 10-yard touchdown. Martinez’s successful kick made the score 28-0 at halftime.
Ingleside would make a scoring threat after the kickoff, moving to the Refugio 27 but there the Mustangs fumbled the ball and Taylor Henning came up with it to end the threat as time ran out in the first half.
The Bobcats took the second half kickoff and started at their own 20. Six plays later the Cats appeared stalled at the Mustangs’ 35 when Hendley hit Irvin Fox with a 13-yard pass to the Mustang 20. On the next play Hendley threw a pass that was tipped right into the hands of Brian Rameriz who took the ball in for a TD. The point after try was good by Martinez and the Cats were rolling with a 35-0 lead early in the third quarter.
The Refugio defense, led by Arcand, Dylan Klare and Bo Adams, continued to hold off the Mustang offensive effort well into the fourth quarter allowing just two first downs and 14 total yards.
By then Coach Jason Herring was unloading his bench and even they would tally a touchdown late in the final stanza. That score would come on a 76-yard drive that took 10 plays with key plays being a 19-yard run by Perez and a 17-yard run by Brent Williams.
Perez would finally end the drive with a 20-yard TD run beautifully executed in Vince Young fashion as he faked to the running back and countered off right guard into a big hole and raced untouched up the middle for the TD. The extra point try was blocked but Refugio had its lopsided 41-0 win.
The Bobcats amassed 18 first downs compared to 7 for the Mustangs. The Cats had 336 yards total offense to Ingleside’s 123 yards. Rushing yardage was spread among 10 running backs with Espindola leading the way with 34 yards on two carries.
Hendley had another good night passing as he hit on 15 of 22 passes for 128 yards and two touchdowns. Leading receivers were Jourdan Ortiz with 6 catches for 50 yards and Martino with 3 for 31 yards.
Refugio will now get back to its regular schedule this Friday as it hosts Industrial in another non-district game. Industrial is 2-0 and coming off a 42-14 win over Ganado.
The Bobcats are currently ranked No. 4 in the Class 2A polls and need to continue their winning ways. The two teams have met previously only three times with Refugio winning all three contests, the last being a 27-0 win in 1992 under Coach George Harris. Game time is 7:30 p.m.