Fort Stockton, Texas — On a sun filled Friday afternoon in Ft. Stockton, TX on the campus of Ft. Stockton High, the Lubbock Cooper Pirates defeated the Austin Panthers 45-0 to win the Region I 5A Division II Area Round Championship and remain undefeated this season at 12-0.
The game started on a bad note for Austin as Cooper won the toss and decided to defer to the 2nd half. The opening kick-off went 7 yards into the end zone and Senior RB Kameron Walker decided to bring it and in doing so was tackled at the 1- yard line. On the ensuing play, the Panthers fumbled, giving the Pirates first and Goal from the 1. Cooper RB Isaiah Johnson ran it in and with 11:18 to play in the 1st Quarter, Lubbock Cooper was up 7-0.
Austin was unable to get anything going offensively, despite some hard runs by Sophomore RB Will Rodriguez and at halftime were down 31-0.
Four Cooper RB’s scored TDs, Isaiah Johnson, Tyler Hairston, Jacob Dennis, and Robert Mott.
It was a tough night for the Panthers as they were unable to cross into Cooper territory the entire game.
All is not lost for the Austin Panthers. They had a great season, finished 9-3 and won a Bi-District Championship. Coach Eric Pichardo has laid a solid foundation in only his 2nd year as Head Coach and the future looks promising for this young Panther club.
Our Casa Nissan Player of the Game for Austin is Sophomore RB/LB William Rodriguez who rushed for 73 yards and had 14 tackles.
Next up for Lubbock Cooper is a clash with Justin Northwest next week.