BEEVILLE -- Trying to win against a team like the unbeaten Beeville Jones Trojans meant playing near-perfect football for Gonzales. But the Apaches never quite reached their stride, losing 27-3 in a game full of mistakes and miscues on all sides of the ball.
“I want to tip my hat and want to tell Coach [ ] Soza and his staff, ‘great job,’” Gonzales head football coach Mike Waldie began. “I’m disappointed that we didn’t get them our best effort, though. That’s just being truthful. You have to give them a lot of credit, they had something to do with that, but I don't know, it starts with me, I take full responsibility when we play like that.”
Whether it was the wrong personnel on the field, players missing assignments, the Apaches were making mistakes that haven’t been done since scrimmages, according to Waldie.
“That tells me, somehow, some way, I didn’t notice that we were doing too much,” he explained. “That start with me, we’re going to fix that. If I get beat, I want to get beat because someone is better than me, not because we don’t perform up to the best of our ability. And it was a combination of both tonight, you have to give them credit.”
After the defense gave up an opening touchdown drive, the Apaches offense took to the field and opened with a play-action 47-yard pass from Heath Henke to Arbreyon Dora to get the team to Beeville’s 12. The drive, however, ended in an interception after a mishandled snap forced the holder to heave the ball into the end zone, where Beeville’s Caleb Bozant was able to return it to the 41-yard line.
The offense mustered just three points, a 42-yard field goal from Daniel Cruz that cut the lead to 14-3. The Apaches gained just three first downs in the first half.
Early in the second quarter, offensive tackle Christian Almaguer went down with what appeared to be a lower back injury. Almaguer was just one of many injured players, including Dillen Ramos who took a few snaps to see if he can play through his injury but the staff determined that he wasn’t quite right to take to the field.
“I think any time at this 4A Division I level that when you got guys having to go both ways against teams that don’t, we won a bunch of games not having to do that, but now here we are in a situation where we got four or five guys now who are having to, due to injuries, having to start playing both ways,” Waldie said. “You don’t make excuses, that’s just facts and hte facts are tonight that our best running back was out, he tried to go, probably shouldn’t have let him, that’s probably my fault, just because he wasn’t as prepared as he should have been.”
“We’ll work on that, we’ll figure it out this week,” he added, “but there’s going to be a few people that are going to have to just go both ways. We’re going to be in Week 9 where you just don’t have any options.”
Defensively, the Apaches were unable to get off the field, with Beeville converting 5-of-11 third downs and 1-of-2 fourth downs. The defense also gave up big plays, including a 4th-and-7 41-yard pass play that ended in a Trojan touchdown, a 59-yard bomb the next offensive possession and late in the first half a 59-yard rush that got the Trojans into the red zone.
“I think you can go back defensively and probably eliminate five plays and we probably couldn’t be much happier against a talented team that we played,” Waldie said. “But those five plays led to those five scores, and that’s 27 points on the board.”
In the second half, the Apaches offense didn’t gain a first down until their final drive of the night.
Gonzales (5-2, 1-1 in District 15-4ADI) take on La Vernia (4-3, 0-1) at home next Friday. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.