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Calhoun routs San Antonio Lanier; Edcouch-Elsa next

Nov. 12, 2011 at 5:12 a.m.

Senior running back Brandon Griffith carries the ball in for a touch down in the first quarter Friday, Nov. 11.  KAITLIN KEANE/KKEANE@VICAD.COM

PORT LAVACA - Nora Barrera was so eager to watch her beloved Calhoun football team that she arrived at Sandcrab Stadium 11 hours before kickoff to ensure a good seat.

There was no way the Port Lavaca native was going to miss the Sandcrabs home game in the Class 4A playoffs, especially because it was her final chance to see Jeremy Loya play at home.

Barrera, Loya and the rest of Sandcrab Nation were not disappointed Friday night as their boys ran over San Antonio Lanier 61-0 in a Class 4A, Division II bi-district game.

"It was a great win for us here at home," said Calhoun coach Richard Whitaker. "We had such a great crowd. We had people lined up here at 7 a.m. (Friday) morning. These fans are nuts here. It was fun playing here and I am proud of our kids."

Calhoun (11-0) scored on its first eight offensive possessions, on its way to 518 rushing yards and a gaudy 11.2 yard rushing average. The Sandcrabs took a knee on their last drive to end the game.

Lanier (7-4) is also running team from the pistol formation. Injuries to its top three running backs forced them to throw the football. Entering the contest the Voks averaged 260 yards on the ground, but Calhoun held them to 52 yards on 25 attempts.

"We stuck to the plan we had at the beginning of the game and they didn't score," said Calhoun linebacker Jakorious Williams, adding the key to the Sandcrabs defense is the family feeling among them. "We wanted to contain the running game and try to keep them out the end zone."

Augie Morales completed 15 of his 23 passing attempts for 163 yards for Lanier. However, he threw three interceptions on the evening, one of which was intercepted by Lupe Rivera at the goal line with five remaining in the second quarter.

"We played a damn good ball club," said Lanier football coach Don Gatian. "This is our first time in the playoffs in four years and this is a special bunch to me. That's a buzzsaw over there. They are a good bunch of guys. They are solid from every position."

Joseph Bargas took the Sandcrabs second play from scrimmage up the far side for a 52 yard touchdown. The senior quarterback was devastatingly effective on the evening, running 10 times for 186 yards and three touchdowns.

Bargas also made timely pitches to Loya and fellow wingback Daniel Brooks, which allowed those two to combine for 175 yards and three touchdowns, on just 11 carries. Following Friday's performance Bargas, Brooks, Loya and fullback Brandon Griffith have each run for 1,000 yards this season.

"I think it's our line, pushing the defensive line back and making us get more yards than we usually get," Loya said. "Our coaches are happy that we haven't punted in five games and we have to keep that rolling through the next game."

The Sancrabs have punted once since September and Loya hopes his team's comprehensive two-sided performance gets the attention of Edcouch-Elsa, who they will play in a rematch of the 2010 area playoffs next week. The Yellowjackets (10-1) eliminated Kingsville 24-7 Friday.

Whitaker wanted his team to play a soft defense and keep the ball in front of them. Morales' completion percentage did not bother him, because with one exception the Voks did not complete a pass longer than 13 yards all evening.

Trey Robinson pilfered two more passes for Calhoun, the first of which he returned 60 yards for a touchdown midway through the third quarter to give the Sandcrabs a 54-0 lead.

"They are a good team," Bargas said. "We knew we had to play hard for all three quarters that we played. We didn't take anything lightly. They had a good record coming into this game, so we knew they were going to play. We just did everything right."

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