CONVERSE – Jordy Martinez wasn’t completely sure what was happening when Refugio coach Jason Herring almost pushed him on the field.
The next thing Martinez knew he was attempting a 35-yard field goal with the Class 2A, Division I regional playoff game on the line.
“I didn’t know it was going to come down to this,” Martinez said. “I haven’t kicked a field goal in eight weeks. I saw the clock running down, but I had to trust my holder (Ethan Perez). He put it down and I just had to do my job from the first day of practice.”
Martinez’s kick sailed through the uprights with 5 seconds left in the fourth quarter to lift the Bobcats to a stunning 45-43 win over Shiner on Friday night at Rutledge Stadium.
Refugio’s Jordy Martinez kicked the game-winning field goal in the Bobcats’ win over Shiner. pic.twitter.com/zGxl1Foor1— Mike Forman (@mikeforman21) November 30, 2019
Refugio, which trailed by 13 points with 3:04 remaining in the fourth quarter, improved to 13-0 and moved into the quarterfinals against Holland, a 26-0 winner over Mason.
The quarterfinal game has been scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Thursday at the Alamodome in San Antonio.
“Our kids don’t quit,” Herring said. “I didn’t know what I was going to say to them if we didn’t come back because they played their guts out and kept fighting, fighting, fighting and fighting. Fortunately, I didn’t have to.”
Refugio scored 31 points in the fourth quarter and took advantage of a fumble recovery by Thomas Keyes and an onside kick recovered by Javon Williams to set up its final two scores.
“It’s not first time we’ve been down,” said Refugio quarterback Austin Ochoa. “You can go back to week whatever against Mart and we were down there. We went into the locker room adjusted some things, kept our heads up and broke through.”
Ochoa did his part by rushing for 163 yards and two touchdowns, and passing for 352 yards and three touchdowns.
Ochoa’s touchdown passes of 76 and 68 yards to Jordan Kelley, and 25 yards to Perez came in the fourth quarter.
“It’s a good feeling,” Ochoa said. “I really can’t put it into words right now because I’m still stoked about Jordy making that field goal. I mean it’s incredible.”
The Bobcats needed the comeback to overcome an outstanding effort by Shiner (12-1), which was led by running back Donyai Taylor.
Taylor carried 22 times for 285 yards, and scored on runs of 21, 74, 83, 28 and 43 yards.
Shiner on the field at Rutledge Stadium. pic.twitter.com/iB3C6PCPF7— Mike Forman (@mikeforman21) November 30, 2019
“Donyai played really well tonight,” said Shiner coach Daniel Boedeker. “He was on a mission. Our guys came out believing. Donyai really put a good game together, and I’m really proud of his effort.”
The Comanches took the lead on Taylor’s 74-yard touchdown run with 10:42 left in the second quarter and held it until Martinez’s field goal.
“It’s very tough,” Boedeker said. “It’s tough on the kids. I’m proud of the effort. They left everything out there. It’s unfortunate they came up short. We as a group came up short. It’s one of those tough things we’re going to have to deal with. I’m proud of every one of these kids and every one of our coaches who put everything out there tonight.
“We did a lot of good things,” Boedeker added. “It’s just one of those things where things just didn’t go our way right there at the end and we came up short.”
Shiner rushed for 443 yards and averaged nearly 10 yards per carry.
“Much respect to their whole team,” said Refugio linebacker Ysidro Mascorro. “Their seniors have been wanting it, so of course they’re going to come at us. Our seniors worked since August so we didn’t want to be done. So we all just stayed in there. No heads down. No tears to get past, nothing.”
Refugio pulled within 43-42 when Ochoa hooked up with Perez with 27 seconds left.
But Ochoa slipped on his two-point conversion run and was stopped short of the goal line.
“I’ve never been a part of anything like that,” Herring said. “The lowest I felt is when Austin slipped on the two-point conversion and didn’t get in. I thought we were going to lose 41-40.”
But Williams recovered Martinez’s onside kick at the Shiner 48.
After an incompletion, Ochoa connected with Perez for 18 yards, and Antwaan Gross for 12 yards to set up Martinez’s winning kick.
Refugio coach Jason Herring after the Bobcats’ regional playoff win. pic.twitter.com/3iCqvU01Of— Mike Forman (@mikeforman21) November 30, 2019
“We were hot, we were hot, we were throwing,” Herring said. “I just thought if we could get the ball back with any time left. I knew our only chance was to kick a field goal with 9 seconds left. Little Jordy had been our kicker and he’s a senior and my gut said go with Jordy.”
NOTES: Shiner and Refugio met in last year’s regional playoffs and the Bobcats captured a 56-41 win.
The teams have met seven times and Refugio leads the series 6-1.