The Odem Owls picked up their second consecutive win to start the season, rallying past Mathis 33-22 at Pirate Stadium Sept. 3.
The Owls struck first, after a scoreless first quarter. Marcus Martinez opened the scoring with a 5-yard touchdown run with 5:17 remaining in the first half. Diego Rodriguez tacked on the extra point to hand Odem a 7-0 lead.
It took Mathis less than a minute to answer, scoring on a 69-yard pass and after making the two-point conversion, the Pirates were up 8-7 with 4:31 remaining in the first half.
After the Owls failed to strike, the Pirates capitalized just before the half, scoring on a 14-yard touchdown pass. Mathis added the two-point conversion to a 16-7 lead into the half.
After a series of turnovers to start the third quarter, the Owls finally got on the board with 5:20 left in the third when Hunter Dawson scored on a 1-yard run, Rodriguez added the point after to pull the Owls within 16-14.
As the fourth quarter began, the Owls defense took control of the game and handed the ball back to the offense. This time Dawson went to the air and found Leon Brown for a 29-yard scoring strike. The conversion failed, but the Owls were in the lead for good 20-16 with 10:20 left in the game.
Mark Moreno capped a 20-0 Owl run after he scored on a 26-yard jaunt with 6:36 left in the game to hand Odem a 27-16 margin.
Mathis ended the Odem run with a 7-yard touchdown pass with 1:25 left in the game, closing the gap to 27-22 but Odem put the game out of reach when Dawson scored on a 10-yard run with one second remaining securing the Owls second straight win to start the year.
Moreno led the Owls with 110 yards rushing followed by Martinez who added 85 yards on the ground and Dawson finished with 46 yards rushing. Dawson completed 9 of 15 passes for another 108 yards. Kyle Castaneda had three receptions for 38 yards, L. Brown had two catches for 35 yards and Marco Gonzales added a pair of receptions for the Owls.
On defense, the Owls held Mathis to nine first downs, led by Diego Rodriguez who picked up nine tackles and recovered a fumble. Dylan Tijerina had eight tackles, Noah Ramirez had an interception with eight tackles, Elijah Pizana had one sack while Bryce Galvan had one sack and recovered a fumble.
Marcos Alvarado led the Mathis offense with 223 yards on 9-of-18 passing. He threw three RDs on the night with Elyon Ybarra catching two of them. Ybarra had 105 yards receiving on three catches.
Carlos Acosta caught two balls for 51 yards and Zedrik Deleon had 34 yards on two grabs, including the team’s other receiving TD.
Deleon also led the team in rushing with 15 yards on six carries.
Derik Deleon led the defense with 17 tackles. Z. Deleon had 14 tackles and Julius Barajas added 10 tackles.
Odem next goes up against Santa Gertrudis in an away non-district game in Kingsville on Thursday, Sept. 9 at 7 p.m.
Mathis plays Karnes City next in an away non-district game on Friday, Sept. 10 at 7:30 p.m.