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Bandera’s historic football season reviewed

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The Bandera Bulldogs finished the season with a 21-14 loss to the Hondo Owls in the first round of the playoffs.

Rather than concentrating on that particular game, I would like to take you down memory remember how special this 2019 football season was for Bandera.

Week 1 - Bulldogs win the home opener vs. SA Memorial 20-13.

Week 2 - Bulldogs win the second home game vs.SA Christian 42-28.

Week 3 - Bulldogs win the first road game vs. St. Anthony 40-12. Bandera plays at the University of the Incarnate Word in a nice college stadium, with a playoff-type atmosphere.

Week 4 - Bulldogs beat a very good Comfort Bobcat team 35-12. Comfort went three rounds in the playoffs, losing to the No. 2 ranked team in the state.

Week 5 - Bulldogs pull their first big upset with a road win vs. Crystal City 24-7. The Harris Poll had us picked to get beat by 20 points. Bandera had other plans, as the Bulldogs upset Crystal City at their Homecoming game.

Week 6 - Bulldogs travel to Cuero (home of the defending state champions). Bandera shocks the State of Texas with a 16-15 win over the Gobblers (bagged ‘em up some turkey). It was the first time Bandera had beaten Cuero. It was also the first time Bandera had started the season 6-0 in 25 years! Dave Campbell’s football publication awarded Bandera the “4A Team of the Week” honors.

Week 7 - Bulldogs fall short for the first time - losing to Wimberley. The Wimberley Texans were a strong team...evident by the fact that the team is still playing. The Texans are currently one of only eight teams left in the hunt for the 4A-D2 State Championship.

Week 8 - Bulldogs win a come-from-behind thriller at home vs. Llano, 28-21. This game clinched the first playoff appearance for Bandera in 10 years!

Week 9 - Bulldogs take care of business with a road win over Austin Eastside 49-6.

Week 10 - Bulldogs take on Navarro with a chance to clinch the district championship. Very few people thought we even had a chance. The Harris Poll had us picked to get beat by 35 points. Somebody forgot to tell the Bulldogs. Bandera played hard and with passion...falling short 41-38 in the last minute. It was probably our best-played game. Navarro was ranked No 1 in the region, and it is still playing. Navarro is currently one of only eight teams left in the hunt for the 4A-D2 State Championship. Navarro and Wimberley play this week for a chance to be a Final Four team in the state.

The Bandera “wrecking crew” defense was solid all year, led by seniors Gunnar Brown, Gage Brown, Colton Perkins, Mason Mu-sick, Tommy Cardenas and Emmett Evans.

The defense had 14 pass deflections, 22 sacks, 4 interceptions, 30 tackles for a loss and scored two touchdowns.

The Bulldog offense was explosive and exciting.

The offensive line, led by seniors Colton Perkins, Zak Widenor, Austin Gauna, Mason Musick, Emmett Evans and Logan Williams, paved the way for 3,613 yards of total offense for the Bulldogs, along with 16 passing TDs and 27 rushing TDs.

The Bulldogs scored more points than any other Bandera team in 11 years, records show.

Tommy Cardenas accounted for 18, all-purpose TDs, while Solomon Mac-Neil had 17 all-purpose scores.

In addition, Mason Phair accounted for 11 receiving TDs, and Gunnar Brown scored eight all-purpose TDs.

Blaise Salazar accounted for 46 total points, as he hit 40 of 41 extra point attempts and was 2-4 on field goals.

The Bandera Bulldogs had a season for the history books. The Bulldogs only two losses during the regular season were to the two teams that are currently No. 1 and No. 2 in the entire region.

Your Bulldogs were a scrappy bunch with no quit in their hearts.

Thank you for being loud and for wearing your Bandera Blue with pride. Your support was second to none.

Greg Bagby is the offensive coordinator for the Bandera Bulldog Varsity Football Team.