CORPUS CHRISTI – The London Pirates deflated Skidmore-Tynan’s sails early in their Week 6 matchup Oct. 2 on their way to beating the Bobcats.

London returned the game’s opening kickoff for a touchdown and ran off the first 25 points of the contest en route to a 39-14 win on its home field, Pirate Stadium.

First-year Bobcat coach Stephen Silva remained steadfast to his “find the positives” approach.

“We had a lot of positives,” he said about the game, which was his team’s third straight loss since starting the year with back-to-back victories.

“... The offense moved the ball, we just killed ourselves with penalties here and there. Defensively, we would have good play, good play, good play, then a letdown.

“Regardless of what the score may look like, we did some good things.

“That’s kind of the story of our whole season.”

London returning the opening kickoff 78 yards for a touchdown was a gut punch from which Skidmore never recovered.

The game was all of 11 seconds old and the Pirates – who were fresh off the first victory over a 5A team in program history the previous week – already had a 7-0 lead.

“It was just a couple of kids who got out of their lanes,” Silva said about the return. “... We kind of helped them out by not being in our assigned lanes and fulfilling our responsibilities the way we’re supposed to.”

The coach said the play deflated his charges.

“A big special teams play like that kind of takes the air out of you right off the bat. It was a little bit tough to come back from.”

London then scored with about two minutes left in the first quarter and again with about four minutes left in the second quarter to take a 19-0 lead into halftime.

The Pirates then scored midway through the third quarter to push their lead to 25-0.

Kade Florence, who finished the game with a team-best 92 rushing yards on seven carries, finally got Skidmore on the scoreboard with 4:27 left in the third with a 63-yard touchdown run on a keeper around right end.

It took London just over a minute to respond with a QB keep of its own that resulted in a 60-yard touchdown.

Skidmore fumbled the ensuing kickoff, and then watched London strike in just two plays, which came just 38 seconds after the team’s previous score.

On the final play of the fourth quarter, freshman Walker Widner finished off the scoring with a 16-yard touchdown run, the first of his high school career.

Injuries forced the freshman into duty for Skidmore.

“We’ve got about four starters who they’ve got a little nagging injury, something here or there, bumps and bruises types of things,” Silva said about his team’s health.

“We’re hoping to get through this next game at Lyford and we’re looking forward to the bye week to maybe get a little bit of rest and get refreshed going into our zone play.”

Michael Menchaca was Skidmore’s second-leading rusher on the night, tallying 83 yards on 10 carries.

Widner carried it 11 times for 67 yards. Joe Guerra added 35 yards on 10 totes.

The Bobcats return to the friendly confines of Bobcat Stadium this week with Lyford coming to town on homecoming night. Kickoff for the contest is set for 7:30 p.m.


Kevin J. Keller has been the sports editor at the Beeville Bee-Picayune since 2014. He can be reached by email at or by phone at 361-343-5223, or you can follow him on Twitter @beepicsports.

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