More than 3,000 fans watched as the Bobcats come back from a 12-0 deficit to dominate Industrial and notch a 32-18 win, their fourth of the season.
Refugio won the coin toss and deferred to the second half so Industrial took the opening kickoff. Three plays later the Cobras punted to Refugio at its 22. The Cat offense moved up to the Cobra 46 where a fourth down try failed and the ball was turned over to Industrial.
The Cobras marched to the Refugio 32 where Matt Anderson broke off tackle and raced into the end zone for a touchdown. The extra point attempt was wide right but the Bobcats trailed 6-0 late in the first quarter.
After taking the ensuing kickoff the Cats moved to midfield and once again failed to make a first down on a fourth-down attempt. The ball again went over to Industrial at its 46.
Three plays later, Austin Smalley got behind the Refugio defensive secondary and caught a pass from Dillon Koop, good for a 49-yard TD. A pass attempt for the two-point conversion failed but now the Cobras were thinking upset with a 12-0 lead early in the second period.
Refugio responded following the kickoff with a lengthy drive of 81 yards for a touchdown. Big plays in the drive were a 22-yard pass play from quarterback Kyle Hendley to Jourdan Ortiz, a 14-yard run by Aaron Perez, and a 10-yard run by Terrence Smith. Smith capped the drive with a four-yard scoring run. Eric Martinez kicked the extra point to narrow the gap to 12-7 at 11:47 in the second quarter.
Martinez kicked off to the Cobras who ran three plays and then punted. Refugio took over at its 33 and again started anther long scoring drive. A 19-yard pass reception by Cory Brown and a screen pass good for 21 yards to Smith kept the drive going. A seven-yard look in pass from Perez to Ortiz ended the scoring drive. Coach Jason Herring chose to go for two points and Perez obliged him by running in for the two pointer making the score at halftime 15-12.
Refugio took the second half kickoff with hope of scoring more points but those hopes were dashed minutes later when a pass by Hendley was batted into the air and intercepted at the Refugio 44.
Three plays later the Cobras were at the Cat 24 and Koop broke on an option play around right end and raced untouched into the end zone. The PAT try failed but again the Cobras were out in front, having gained an 18-15 lead and Cobra fans were ecstatic.
For the third time Refugio started a long scoring drive following the kickoff. Starting at its 35, the Refugio offense moved in thirteen plays to the Cobra 10. There, facing fourth down and seven, Coach Herring opted for a field goal.
Eric Martinez, who is a good kicker, has had trouble in previous games kicking field goals. This one was a 27-yard field goal, and he had no problem as he easily parted the uprights to tie the game up at 18-18 going into the final stanza.
Now the Refugio defense really began to step up. Bobby Arcand, Dylan Klare, Bo Adams, Randy Harvey, Brian Ramirez, and company, would be tenacious for the remainder of the game.
The Cat defense forced Industrial to punt on its next possession and Refugio set up shop at its 37. Three plays later Hendley hit Ortiz with a beautiful pass on a crossing pattern and he scored from 50 yards out. Martinez added the PAT and Refugio went ahead 25-18 with 11:19 left in the game.
Martinez, who consistently kicks the ball into the end zone, did it again on the following kickoff and the Cobras had to start from their own 20. On the second play a Cobra pass was intercepted by Cory Brown and the Bobcats set up at the Cobra 30.
Seven plays later Hendley scored on a keeper over right guard from one-yard out. Martinez upped the score to 32-18 with his kick.
With 6:18 left in the game Industrial was now desperate to score but the Bobcat defense, led by Dylan’s and Arcand’s sacks of Smalley, was rock solid and stifled that attempt.
Refugio pretty well dominated the statistics and led in first downs 22-9, and total yardage gained at 386-192. Coach Herring’s utilization of two quarterbacks during the game was productive.
Hendley hit on nine of 17 passes for 109 yards and one TD while Perez hit on eight of 14 passes for 111 yards and one TD. Ortiz had a good night receiving. He caught eight of 14 passes for 132 yards.
Refugio travels to Edna this Friday night to take on the Cowboys in another non-district contest at 7.
Edna is coming off a 25-20 win over Van Vleck. Despite its 1-3 record, Edna can be expected to play hard against the Cats. The series between the two teams in the past shows Refugio holding a slim 8-6 margin. Refugio last played Edna in 2003, losing a close 21-20 decision.