Refugio looks for better results
Dec. 8, 2011 at 6:08 a.m.
Updated Dec. 9, 2011 at 6:09 a.m.
REFUGIO - Refugio has paid heed to the adage that those who forget history are doomed to repeat it.
The Bobcats (13-0) have no desire to relive last year's 45-24 Class 2A, Division II semifinal loss to Lexington (11-2) when the teams meet in a rematch Friday at 7:30 p.m. at Heroes Stadium in San Antonio.
"Our motto this year has been it's time for us to beat a great team," said Refugio coach Jason Herring. "That's really been our focus."
Refugio is making its third straight appearance in the semifinals, but the last two years it has come home disappointed, losing to Daingerfield 35-10 in 2009.
Last year's loss to the Eagles has stuck with the Bobcats throughout this season.
"The one that really disappoints me is last year," Herring said. "They put a whuppin on us and they really weren't that much better than us."
Lexington rushed for 255 yards and forced three turnovers.
The Eagles also stopped a fake punt attempt by Refugio and went on to score 15 points in the final 50 seconds of the first half to turn a 7-6 deficit into a 21-7 lead.
"We didn't play very good and I learned a valuable lesson - you don't take that many chances," Herring said. "I've called less fake punts and less crazy stuff this year. Last year, I called a fake punt and it kind of started that down roll and I never really forgave myself for that.
"I guess if I've learned something from those games it's I'm going to be more conservative because I'm a riverboat gambler," he added. "I've never been afraid to onside, I've never been afraid to sling the rock and fake punts. But this year, I've learned to be a little bit more conservative and not beat ourselves."
Herring didn't envision a rematch because Lexington lost 10 starters on defense from last year's team.
The Eagles did return quarterback Kogan Garrett, who has accounted for 3,827 yards and 44 touchdowns.
"I wasn't sure they could make it through Region III again," Herring said. "That's a credit to coach (Jason) Holcomb and the program. You don't graduate your whole defense and get back to the semis usually.
"They look every bit as good as they did last year. They're probably better on offense because everybody is a year older."
Refugio has scored 792 points and rolled up 7,054 yards of total offense, but Herring is aware much of it came against less-than-stellar competition.
"Let's face it, Region III has been Refugio's nemesis," he said. "Way before I got here and since I've been here. I've worked myself to the bone to make sure we've done everything we can. No question this one's special because we've failed to beat a Region III team since I've been here and we've not made it to the championship game."
The championship game will be played at noon Friday, Dec. 16 at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington against the winner of Friday night's game between Cisco and Corsicana Mildred in Mansfield.
The Bobcats know exactly what it will take to get to the final for the first time since 1987.
"This year's a lot different," said senior Shiloh Whetsel. "We have so many weapons everywhere. We've really come together and we get stronger every week.
"We didn't play very well on offense last week (a 41-24 quarterfinal win over Sonora) and we put it to them pretty good. We scored 41 points and that's not clicking on offense. We're going to have to this week. We need to play defense like we did and click on offense and we'll be going to Arlington."