Cornerback's key PAT block helps Warriors get third straight win
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IF YOU GOVictoria West (4-2, 1-0) vs. Floresville (4-2, 0-1)
7:30 p.m. Friday at Memorial Stadium
Jayce Serrano had been close several times. But he got his hand on the ball when it mattered most.
Most remembered from Friday's game will be Kyle Motal's 4-yard, fourth down pass to tight end Zach Mueller to beat Beeville.
But at best the score would have allowed the Warriors to tie the game if it wasn't for Serrano, who broke through on the Trojans' extra point attempt in overtime to give his team a chance with a key block.
"I tried to get a good jump on it, and get my hands up and block it," Serrano said.
Instead, the Warriors extra point secured the victory on that game-winning score.
Because he'd almost blocked a few other extra points last Friday night, the Trojans had become acutely aware of Serrano, who was positioned on on the edge of the Warriors line.
And it made them antsy.
"Coach said that they were looking to account for me more, and that might have made them a little bit more nervous on a big play," Serrano said.
The snap was a less-than-ideal one, but the holder got the ball down. McAngus said nerves may have played a role.
"The ball wasn't handled completely well by the holder, but Jayce had been close all night," he said. "They knew he was coming, and I think it made them kind of hurry."
The kicker had to wait before taking a try at the point after, and it gave Serrano the time he needed, McAngus said.
"The other extra points they had made, he had been flying across there, barely not getting them," the coach said. "The hustle he had on the other ones played a part in that one."
But the play was made possible with the rest of his teammates hitting their assignments.
"Everybody filled the gaps they needed to, so it let me come off the corner like I needed to," Serrano said.
He knew the importance of what he needed to do, particularly because the Warriors are consistent with their own extra points.
"I knew if I blocked it, it would make a difference because we're always good at making our extra points," he said.
And Serrano would know. He's the holder for Warriors kicker Felipe Bastida.
He's also been tasked with having to pick up the slack in the wake of the Week 1 injury to cornerback E.J. Simmons.
Since he plays on the other side of the field from the other spot, it hasn't affected how other teams play him, but it has meant that the team has been looking for options to fill in on the other side.
"It's not really that much different on my side of the field, because everyone is still there," he said. "But you try to coach them up and try to make them have confidence."
His coach, though, said Serrano's hustle has helped the team.
"It's a game of inches, and I think the hustle he had on that play made a huge difference," McAngus said.
The Warriors have come on strong in the last three games, winning all three on the road. They play at home Friday against Floresville in a big district game.
"We have confidence and we trust each other, and we know that if it comes down to the last play, we know we're going to get it," he said. "Trust is a key part of our offense and defense."