FOOTBALL WEEKEND REPORT (Sept. 17-19): Highlands regroups after bye week, downs Edison

AREA TEAMS INCLUDED: Central Catholic, Edison, Highlands, Jefferson, Lanier.



Highlands (2-1, 1-0) exploded out of its bye week with a decisive District 28-5A win over Edison (2-2, 1-1) Sept. 18 at the SAISD Sports Complex.

The Owls snapped a10-game district losing streak with help from several big plays in a 42-16 win over the Golden Bears.

“It was a big help, just to be able to get our confidence back,” first-year Highlands coach Juan Morales said, referring to a 42-20 loss Sept. 4 to Uvalde. “We wanted to make sure we improved, and that sure happened. It helped our defense more than anything.

“We got in the classroom and made some adjustments. Now we’re able to assess where we’re at.”

Each Owls touchdown covered 22 yards or more.

“We were able to establish the run right off the bat,” Morales said. “I think doing that helped everything. I was really proud of the way we played football today.”

Joseph Delgado drilled a 27-yard field goal that put Edison in the lead.

However, junior quarterback Dylan Camacho staked Highlands to a 14-3 advantageearly in the second quarter with a 45-yard scoring pass to Bruce Moody (75 yards, 4 receptions) and a 22-yarder to Richard Saldana (63 yards, 2 receptions). Both senior receivers scored two touchdowns.

“Our quarterback played well,” Morales said. “He’s learning quickly.”

Saldana’s touchdown was the first of three in the second quarter as Highlands established a 29-3 halftime lead. Chris Hernandez scored on a 34-yard punt return. With 1:17 left in the half, Camacho (8 of 9, 138 yards) tossed a lateral to Saldana, and Moody completed the hook-and-ladder play with a 31-yard run.

The St. Gerard transfer executed the lateral to his senior teammate so smoothly, it almost looked like a handoff.

“We didn’t really work on it a lot,” Saldana said. “We worked on it the first week and the coaches said we’d do it in a game someday. It just worked.”

Mark Ugarte, on a 62-yard interception return, and Matthew Garcia, with a 28-yard run, accounted for Edison’s touchdowns.

“We wanted make sure we stuck to our responsibilities,” Morales said. “We wanted to get into their backfield. Garcia’s a great runner. We wanted to make sure he had to work hard for his yards.”

Saldana said he was glad that the work Highlands put in after the Uvalde game was reflected on the field.

“The weaknesses we had in our first two games, we worked on them the whole bye week,” he said. “We knew we could do better as a team. We knew we could execute as a team.”

Jefferson 35, Lanier 20

The Mustangs (1-3, 1-0) picked up its first victory of the season in a District 28-5A game against Lanier (0-4, 0-2) Sept. 18 at Alamo Stadium.

Jefferson senior back Jesse Flores (279 yards, 25 carries) erupted for touchdown runs of 84, 13, two and 49 yards. Davion Clark added a five-yard scoring run.

For the Voks, a two-yard run from senior Frank McCumber cut Jefferson’s lead to 14-7. Freshman Christian Cervantes broke a 55-yard touchdown run with 6:10 remaining in the third quarter to close the gap to 21-14. Julian Castillo caught a seven-yard touchdown pass from Jeremiah Esquivel (8 of 18, 113 yards) to complete the scoring with 1:18.

Castillo ran 15 times for 86 yards. Damien Tovar caught two passes for 64 yards. Eric Flores added 44 rushing yards for Jefferson on eight attempts.

Devine 15, Central Catholic 6

Devine (3-1) capped a long scoring drive with a rushing touchdown from quarterback Dillon Ricord (86 yards, 17 carries). Ricord had given the Warhorses the lead over Central Catholic (2-2) in the second quarter in Devine.

Buttons back Caleb Salinas (64 yards, 12 times) scored in the third quarter, cutting Central Catholic’s deficit to 8-6.

Central Catholic quarterback James Morton ran eight times for 59 yards and completed eight of 16 passes for 66 yards. Austin Vargas caught four passes for 40 yards.

The victory was the 100th for Warhorses coach Chad Quisenberry.

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