Brandeis stuns Johnson with 28-point comeback; Peoples leads Veterans Memorial to first district win; Davenport races past Devine, stays unbeaten

Nixon-Smiley wins back-to-back district games; Holy Cross impresses in dominant victory over YMLA

10-2-2022 BGC Newsletter Week 7 (Mark Mendez, Andrew Cely, KSAT)

We have officially reached the midpoint of the 2022 high school football season! Many teams enjoyed their bye weeks over the weekend, but those that played put on quite a show.

Whether it was Brandeis’ otherworldly comeback against Johnson, James Peoples’ incredible showing against Lockhart or Davenport’s 63-point outburst against Devine, offenses continue to light gridirons on fire across the greater San Antonio area. From here on out, the games only get tougher and more meaningful as teams duke it out for district supremacy and playoff positioning.

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Before we take a deep dive into some of the most memorable games from Week 6 of our Big Game Coverage (BGC), let’s recap the biggest moments from the week that was in the Best of BGC!

Week 6 was full of incredible plays from all across the greater San Antonio area! On Instant Replay, we selected the best of the best, including highlights from Taft, Davenport, Holy Cross, Roosevelt and Dilley!

>> Click here to check out the Best of BGC from Week 6! <<

Be sure to check out all of the highlights from Week 6 as well!

(Copyright 2021 by KSAT - All rights reserved.)

Several members of last week’s KSAT 12′s Top 12 suffered tough losses and dropped out of the rankings entirely. Who jumped up to take their place?

>> See the full Week 7 rankings by clicking here! <<

(Copyright 2021 by KSAT - All rights reserved.)


This District 28-6A showdown looked like it was all wrapped up as the clock shifted to the fourth quarter. That’s just another sign that high school football is one of the most unpredictable sports on the planet.

The Jaguars (3-2, 2-1) roared out to an early lead thanks to a pair of touchdowns late in the first quarter. Dual-threat quarterback Ty Hawkins used his legs to give Johnson a 7-0 lead on a four-yard scamper, then he found Alejandro Tavarez on a 21-yard strike two minutes later for a 14-0 advantage. Brandeis QB JC Evans answered back with a touchdown run of his own in the second quarter, but the Jaguars entered halftime up 14-7. That lead ballooned in the third quarter, as Hawkins again hit Tavarez for a 31-yard score and Harrison Stone kicked a 41-yard field goal to give Johnson a commanding 24-7 advantage heading into the final 12 minutes of regulation.

That’s when Brandeis flipped the game on its head.

Evans knifed his way into the end zone again on a three-yard keeper early in the fourth to cap a four-minute drive and cut the deficit down to 10 points. Johnson then fumbled the ensuing kickoff, and Christian Hallmark appeared to come up with the loose ball. The Broncos (5-1, 4-0) quickly capitalized on the field position, and Joseph Coleman raced in for a four-yard touchdown two minutes later to give the Brandeis sideline new life. Now trailing 24-21, it was the Bronco defense’s turn to force a stop. Facing 4th-and-1 on their own side of the field, Johnson elected to go for it instead of punt the ball away. Hawkins kept it himself and attempted to follow his blockers, but Brandeis’ Skyler Voutour swooped in for the tackle and forced a turnover on downs.

Suddenly, the Broncos regained possession with another short field and a chance to drive for the lead. A little under four minutes later, Evans delivered with another one-yard plunge, and Brandeis had officially erased a 17-point deficit to go up 28-24. The drama was far from over. Needing a touchdown to win the game, Hawkins marched his team into Bronco territory. With 30 seconds left, the Jaguars faced a 3rd-and-3 at the 24-yard line. Hawkins took the snap and rolled to his left, buying time for someone to get open downfield. Before Hawkins could release his pass, senior outside linebacker Brady Zingelmann burst free and leveled Hawkins, jarring the ball loose. Junior defensive back Jacob Voss snatched the ball out of the air and raced 71 yards the other direction for a stunning pick six.

The comeback was complete. The Broncos had scored 28 straight points in 11 minutes, a run capped by one of the best defensive plays of the season. Another incredible chapter in one of the best rivalries in the city.



The lesson from this game is pretty simple: James Peoples is a beast.

The Patriots (4-1, 1-0) opened up District 13-5A Division II play against Lockhart (4-2, 1-1) on Friday and needed every yard from Peoples to pick up a victory. Both squads traded touchdowns in a wild first quarter. Peoples scored Veterans Memorial’s first TD from 11 yards out, then quarterback CJ Irving factored into the next two touchdowns -- one rushing TD and one passing TD to Clinton Dixon -- as the Patriots and Lions battled to a 21-all tie after one quarter of action. Veterans Memorial trailed 28-21 at halftime.

In the second half, Peoples dominated the game. First, he scored on a 38-yard sprint towards the tail end of the third quarter to cut the deficit to one point, 28-27. Then in the fourth quarter, he scored three total touchdowns -- a two-yard score, a 67-yard burst and an 18-yard run -- to give the Patriots enough of a cushion to survive the shootout. Peoples finished the game with 29 carries for 378 yards and FIVE touchdowns, as Veterans Memorial got that all-important first win in district play.



If we’ve learned anything over the first six weeks of the season, it’s that Davenport can put points on the board.

The Wolves (5-0) seized control of their non-district showdown with Devine (5-1) on Friday night late in the first quarter on dynamic running back Shastin Golden’s 55-yard touchdown scamper that gave them a 20-14 lead. The Warhorses returned fire early in the second quarter thanks to running back Ethan Santos, who tied the game 20-20 on a two-yard score. That’s when Davenport pulled away. Quarterback Triston Hamlin connected with wide receiver Kyler Payne twice on touchdown passes of 18- and 60-yards, as Davenport headed into the halftime locker room with a 34-20 advantage.

Both teams traded touchdowns for the remainder of the night. Santos ended the game with 29 carries for a whopping 306 yards and five touchdowns. Fellow running back Gabriel Esquibel added 165 yards and a score of his own, as Devine racked up nearly 500 total rushing yards.

It just wasn’t enough to keep up with the Wolves. Hamlin completed 18 passes for 294 yards and four touchdowns. Payne caught six of those passes for 141 yards and three TDS. Golden added 157 rushing yards and three touchdowns of his own, and Davenport managed to win a battle of undefeated teams to improve to 5-0. A perfect way for the Wolves to wrap up their non-district schedule and prepare to host Taylor next week to kick off District 13-4A Division I.


District 15-3A Division II play has gotten off to a crazy start. Karnes City (3-3, 1-1) and Nixon-Smiley (3-3, 2-0) entered Friday night’s matchup with matching 1-0 records in district, and both teams traded touchdowns throughout the first half as the Badgers led 13-12 at the break.

Freshman Julian Amaya gave the Mustangs the lead in the third quarter with a 28-yard touchdown run, and that proved to be the game-winner as Nixon-Smiley hung on for a crucial district win. This marks the first time since 2014 that the Mustangs have won back-to-back district games. Amaya finished with a game-high 102 yards rushing. Senior George Rodrigez recorded 55 rushing yards and a score of his own, and junior quarterback Luke Moses completed four passes for 75 yards and a touchdown to senior Bradyn Martinez in the victory.


Friday night, I got a chance to swing by Holy Cross High School for the first time this season. The Knights hosted an improving YMLA squad, and it didn’t take long for the home team to get on the board. After forcing a punt on the opening possession, quarterback Gibby Alvarado uncorked a deep ball for Xavier Garza that ignited the offense. A few plays later, Rudy Rodriguez came up with the Catch of the Week. As Alvarado rolled out, he found Rodriguez downfield for an incredible one-handed grab, and the senior stayed on his feet and tightroped the sidelines for a 14-yard score and a 7-0 lead. On their next possession, Rodriguez took a quick pass the distance for a 65-yard score, and the Knights led 14-0 after one quarter of play. Alvarado spread the ball around to five different receivers and completed 12 total passes for 210 yards and three touchdowns, while running back Joe Angel Perez III provided offensive balance with 19 carries for 101 yards and a three TDs of his own, as Holy Cross cruised to a 41-14 victory. The Knights are now 4-1 on the season after back-to-back blowout victories. They are definitely a team to keep an eye on as we begin the back half of the season.

Rodriguez’s Catch of the Week honors did not go unchallenged. Reagan junior Michael Yzaguirrre made a great leaping grab over a defender in the first quarter of the Rattlers’ 55-10 victory over LEE at Comalander Stadium on Saturday afternoon. Yzaguirre also caught a pair of touchdown grabs in the second half. Now Reagan has reeled off three straight wins and joins Brandeis as the only two undefeated teams in District 28-6A play.


In case you missed it, here’s some more local sports highlights and stories from the last week:

We’ll see you on Thursday night for the start of Week 7!

Andrew Cely, KSAT 12 Sports Producer and Reporter

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