El Paso 6A-5A bi-district round preview

Thursday November 15 (all times Mountain time)

Canutillo Eagles (4-6, 2-3) @ Austin Panthers (8-2, 5-1)

5A DII bi-district round, 7:00 pm kickoff, 6:45 pm pregame show

*Winner plays Lubbock Cooper or Fort Worth Eastern Hills in area round

Broadcasters: Alex Nicolas and Coach Tony Grijalva

Channels: Canutillo and Austin https://www.towntalksportselpaso.com/canutillo-isd/

Austin has been one of the more consistent teams across the city this season, but will have their hands full with a hungry Canutillo program looking to continue adding postseason trophies to the mantle.  Canutillo will look for a big game for 1,000-yard rusher Carlos Amato who had a huge junior year and will look to keep his season going.  Austin has a pair of defensive studs in Will Rodriguez and Luis Angel Hernandez who will look to slow down the Eagles’ run game.  A physical, low scoring game, which will be decided by the team who can play a clean, mistake free game.

Town Talk Sports El Paso Predicts….Austin by 4


Friday November 16 (all times Mountain time) 

Midland Lee Rebels (8-2, 4-1) @ Americas Trailblazers (6-4, 3-2)

6A DII bi-district round, 5:00 pm kickoff, 4:45 pregame show

*Winner plays Arlington Bowie or Haltom in area round

Broadcasters: Christian Molinar and Ryan Adams

Channels: Americas https://www.towntalksportselpaso.com/americas-trail-blazers/

Midland Lee is a 6A Region I contender after their big win against arch rival Permian last week who they share the 2-6A title with.  It will be a battle of talented running backs as Lee’s Josh Traylor has ran for 1,000 yards in each of his three varsity seasons.  Americas’ Aaron Dumas will look to match or double that production over his career as the sophomore ran for over 2,000 yards in his varsity debut in 2018, and will play in his first playoff game.  Americas has a sneaky good defense that will keep this one close early, but the young Blazers will face a team that has state championship hopes and dreams.

Town Talk Sports El Paso Predicts….Midland Lee by 21

Pebble Hills Spartans (5-5, 2-3) at Amarillo Tascosa Rebels (7-3, 4-1)

6A DI bi-district round, 6 pm kickoff, 5:45 pregame show

*Winner plays Weatherford or Arlington in area round

Broadcasters: Eric Martinez and Adrian Martinez

Channels: Pebble Hills https://www.towntalksportselpaso.com/pebble-hills-spartans/

A tough road trip for the bi-district round mirrors the Spartans’ first ever playoff appearance. Last year Pebble Hills went six hours east to San Angelo, this time they go six hours north to face Tascosa’s triple option in Amarillo.  The Spartans got in thanks to Americas win over Montwood last week and come into the playoffs losers of their last two game but is not to be slept on.  Pebble Hills has shown plenty of offensive power with Air Force commit Caleb Gerber, and dual threat quarterback Sebastian Ochoa.  The key for the Spartans will be to try to find a way (if possible) to slow a pair of rushers who will go over 1,000 yards Friday for Rebels in quarterback Joseph Plunk, and three-star running back King Dorue who is a top-60 player in the state by most recruiting publications. The elements will be against the Spartans, as they get another playoff appearance under their young belts, but the Rebels will be too much to handle in the end.

Town Talk Sports El Paso Predicts….Tascosa by 20 

Chapin Huskies (4-6, 3-2) at Lubbock Coronado (8-2, 5-1)

5A DI bi-district round, 6 pm kickoff, 5:45 pregame show

*Winner plays Azle or Colleyville Heritage in area round

BroadcastersEric Horton

Channels: Chapin https://www.towntalksportselpaso.com/chapin-huskies/

Both teams are coming off tough losses in the final week of the regular season and will look to keep their season alive in Lubbock.  Coronado goes air-raid and is pretty good at it to say the least.  They have three receivers with 40 more catches on the season, while sophomore quarterback Sawyer Robinson completes 64 percent of his passes with 37 touchdowns to just four interceptions.  Coronado safety Cameron Stevenson is ranked in the top-10 in the state with 10 interceptions.  Chapin boasts a few FBS prospects on defense who will face a formidable offense that will be difficult to stop at times.  Chapin running back Jason Cambra will have to be a big play threat like he’s been all year to give Chapin a chance.  This game has shootout potential if the Huskies can avoid turnovers.

Town Talk Sports El Paso Predicts….Coronado by 13

Coronado Thunderbirds (7-3, 3-2) @ Odessa Permian Panthers (7-3, 4-1)

6A DI bi-district round, 6:30 pm Mountain Time kickoff time from Odessa, Texas, pregame show starts at 6:15 pm. 

*Winner plays San Angelo Central or Arlington Lamar

Broadcasters: Alex Nicolas and Tony Grijalva

Channels Coronado: https://www.towntalksportselpaso.com/coronado-t-birds/

For the second straight year, Mojo and Coronado meet in the bi-district round.  Like last year, the T-Birds come into the playoffs with major momentum, but will have to play a clean game to keep up with the mighty Panthers.  Carter McFaddin and the T-Bird defense will face a four-star prospect and Texas commit and quarterback Peyton Powell who is a clutch performer with a bright future.  Permian has a thunder-lighting combo in veteran backs Ed Williams and Justin Hammond who have played good football over their careers.  Coronado will match Permian with some experience of their own in three-year varsity running back Garrett Slaughter and new found offensive weapon Dominque Varela who ran for 143 yards and three touchdowns last week.  This one will be closer than people think, Permian is 24-1 all-time versus Coronado, and will sneak by a hard fighting T-Birds squad playing their best football of the season

Town Talk Sports El Paso Predicts…Permian by 5

Abilene Cooper Cougars (5-5, 4-2) @ Eastwood Troopers (7-3, 5-0)

5A DI Bi-district round, 6:30 pm, pregame show, 6:15 pm

*Winner gets Saginaw Boswell or Birdville in area round

Broadcasters: Chris Gomez and Trey Smith

Channels: Eastwood https://www.towntalksportselpaso.com/eastwood-troopers/

A pair of teams who had slow starts to the regular season meet for the first time since 1994.  Eastwood won their first district championship in 2018 for the first time since that 1994 season.  Sophomore Noah Garcia is the best underclassmen in the city of Abilene and has ran for over 100 yards in seven straight games.  Eastwood continues to get different playmakers step up, showing off their depth on both sides of the ball in each of their last six straight wins.  Garcia will get his yards, but the Troop get the trophy.

Town Talk Sports El Paso Predicts…Eastwood by 12

Amarillo Sandies (7-3, 4-2) @ Del Valle Conquistadores (7-2, 4-1)

6A DII bi-district round, 6:30 pm kickoff, 6:15 pregame show

*Winner plays Denton Ryan or Fort Worth Brewer

Broadcasters: Mike Tipton and Mark Mena

Channels: Del Valle https://www.towntalksportselpaso.com/del-valle-conquistadores/

Amarillo has a new look on offense and makes the long trip to El Paso to face another high-powered offense with experienced weapons.  Raymond Montez has had an all-district type of year, along with veteran targets Karch Gardiner, Danny Cortez, and Cauy Oropeza.  If Del Valle’s defense can find a way to get off the field like they consistently did in district play, Del Valle should be able to use Montez and the homefield advantage to lift a trophy at Conquest.  Amarillo has a dynamic and balanced offense, but they also have a big-time playmaker in defensive back Maycin Smothermon who is tied for the second most interceptions in the 5A DI Region I with seven interceptions.  The Sandie defense has 23 takeaways so far on the season.  Both programs are playoff tested and will give fans a treat in what should be a sold-out Conquest Stadium.  Dell Valle wins in a shootout…

Town Talk Sports El Paso Predicts….Del Valle by 5

Midland Bulldogs (4-6, 2-3) @ Franklin Cougars (8-2, 5-0)

6A DI Bi-district round, 7 pm kickoff, 6:45 pregame show

*Winner gets Arlington Martin or Euless Trinity in area round

Broadcasters: Michael Montes and Cole Freytag

Channels: Franklin https://www.towntalksportselpaso.com/franklin-cougars/

Franklin’s season seemed to turn the corner in week three when the Cougs put up 63 points on the road to stop their early two game losing streak against the Midland Bulldogs.  Since then, Franklin has won eight straight, shutout their heated rival, and have the 1-6A trophy resting on the west side of El Paso.  Franklin has gotten it done despite several key injuries on offense, but will have a running back tandem in Michael Mendoza, and James McClain-Green, along with a dangerous quarterback and wide receiver combo in Danny Walther and Gabe Stonewall.  Franklin’s main strength down the stretch of the season is charged by MVP candidate and star linebacker David Powers.  Midland’s offense is led by UTSA commit Suddin Sapien who ran for over 100 yards versus the Cougars at Grande back in September.  Should be another high scoring game, with the same result.

Town Talk Sports El Paso Predicts….Franklin by 17

Hanks Knights (5-5, 2-3) @ Andress Eagles (8-2, 6-0)

5A DII bi-district round, 7 pm kickoff, 6:45 pregame show

*Winner gets Fort Worth Wyatt or Wichita Falls Rider

Broadcasters: Abel Carrillo and Peter Carrillo

Channels: Hanks and Andress https://www.towntalksportselpaso.com/el-paso-isd/

Hanks has played inspired football to get themselves into the playoffs, but their offense will face their biggest task in the elite Andress defense.  Andress’ defense pitched two shutouts during district play, and did not allow a touchdown in three straight games during district play.  Hanks is led by junior wideout Mykal Blanco who will get tested against one of the best athletic defensive secondaries he will face all year.  Keep an eye on Hanks quarterback Aaron Molina who is another star in the making.  The Eagles offense will rely on their offensive line, dynamic run game, and big play receivers like Marco Barron and Darian Smith who will look to stretch the field.  Andress has sights on a deep playoff run led by their outstanding defense, and they continue to roll.

Town Talk Sports El Paso Predicts…..Andress by 24

Irvin Rockets 6-4, (3-3) @ Parkland Matadors (9-0-1, 5-0)

5A D2 bi-district round, kickoff 7 pm, pregame show 6:45

*Winner plays Canyon Randall or Fort Worth Southwest in area round

Broadcasters: Paul David Oliver and Henry Reyna

Channels: Irvin and Parkland https://www.towntalksportselpaso.com/el-paso-isd/

Parkland is a statewide 5A DII Region I favorite, while Irvin limps into the playoffs having lost three straight.  The Mats explosive offense averages 257 rushing yards per game, and 256 through the air led by Deion Hankins who has ran for 23 touchdowns this season, and is close to 2,000 yards.  Irvin has some talented playmakers who have ability, but the Mats will be playing deep into November again this year.

Town Talk Sports El Paso Predicts…Parkland by 30

Burges Mustangs (6-3-1, 4-2) at Horizon (5-5, 3-2)

5A DII bi-district round, kickoff 7 pm, pregame show 6:45 pm

*Winner plays Wichita Falls High or Justin Northwest in area round

Broadcasters: Sergio Robali, and Shawn Murphy

Channels: Burges https://www.towntalksportselpaso.com/el-paso-isd/

Horizon has been a Cinderella story over the past few weeks, but will look to prove their mettle against a really good Burges team.  Another game that pairs two talented runners.  Burges’ Robert Hall eclipsed the 1,000 rushing mark along with 17 touchdowns in his first varsity season.  Isaiah Quijas has looked like an MVP over the past few weeks and will be a major key in this one.  The last time Burges and Horizon met in the playoffs, it took four overtimes to decide a winner, something similar could very well happen again this week.  Horizon continues to shock people and slips past Burges in an absolute thriller.

Town Talk Sports El Paso Predicts…Horizon by 1

Other games of note

Eastlake at Amarillo Caprock, 5 pm MT Thursday in Amarillo (follow @TTSportsEP For score updates)

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