The Texas Highschool Football Postseason has rapidly advanced into the third round. Several perennial teams have, unsurprisingly, punched their ticket to the Regional Semi-Final games.
However, one team, or a particular community, that has been due for an experience like football during the holiday season would be that of Brazos.
“You try to tell the team what it [postseason football] is like,” said Brazos HC Ryan Roecker. “I described the feeling of being there. And they’ll get to experience how the community is rallied around them. It’s just different.”
This 3A-Division team from the small town of Wallis, TX has defied expectations by, not only, making the playoffs with a record of 7-3, but continuing their campaign by defeating highly-favored Lexington (35-28) in Round 1, followed by their win against Hebbronville (42-15), last week.
The Cougars have not lacked talent, in previous years. The main reason they've missed out on the postseason, in the past, was due to costly injuries on a team that didn’t have many additional players on their limited roster.
“We’ve had some bad luck, with injuries, in the past,” Coach Roecker said. “Everybody’s been a little dinged up, but luckily, we have, for the first time in a while, been able to escape that major injury bug that has taken some of our top players down for multiple games or an entire season.”
Despite the odds, Brazos has managed to push through the adversity with the help of key players, such as the team’s leader, Senior QB/FS Bryson Bennet, dual-role Senior Center/Nose-guard Jonoah Fonseca, and do-it-all Senior RB Vinny Aguilar, who rushed for over 230 yards with 3 touchdowns in their Round 2 win.
One of the team's leaders, QB Bryson Bennet, will hope to usher the Cougars into the next round of the 3A State Playoffs
“These seniors were 9-1 as freshmen,” said Coach Roecker. “We just had some rough times through COVID and other situations. They’ve displayed poise for four years in Brazos.”
The Brazos Cougars are set to face off against their division rival, Tidehaven, on Friday at 2:00 PM at Freedom Field in Pasadena, TX. Brazos lost their first matchup against Tidehaven, in the regular season (33-13). The city of Wallis will be supporting their Cougars, in hopes that they maintain their momentum
“Our slogan for the football season, this year, was ‘Band of Brothers’,” Coach Roecker said. “It’s a special group.. That’s a dangerous group of guys when nobody’s worried about touches, or who gets the touchdowns, or who gets recognized. Just the fact that the team only cares that the family, Brazos, as a whole, gets the recognition, is pretty special, this day and age.”
“Just the fact that the team only cares that the family, Brazos, as a whole, gets the recognition, is pretty special, this day in age.” -Coach Ryan Roecker