A last minute score for the Taft Greyhounds (1-2) put away Bishop (0-3) in the Badgers’ third straight loss of the season, 41-40.
The Badgers’ offense had its first opportunity to shine facing the Greyhounds, racking up more than 300 yards of total offense for the first time all season.
Isaiah Rodriguez led the backfield in touches and yards with 255 yards rushing on 14 carries for two touchdowns.
Niko Garcia, Javier Rojas, A.J. Garza and Zeke Guerrero each had a rushing touchdown on the night to add to the point total, the first time all season the Badgers were able to put points on the scoreboard.
Garcia also had two big completions on the night, the first to Garza for 20 yards and the second to Noe Pena for 38 yards.
Garcia also had an interception on the night, which took place on the last play in the Badgers’ final attempt to win the game.
On defense, the Badgers were able to force two fumbles, and Nic Hinojosa was able to recover one for a Greyhound turnover.
Joel Hernandez and Noe Pena led the defense in tackles with four apiece, and George Garza had three solo tackles of his own.
Despite the outcome of the game, Bishop Coach Joe Rios said it was great to see his team compete at such a high level, even with his starting quarterback and one of his running backs out with injury.
“You know, we’ve been through a lot all week with all the injuries and a bunch of turmoil and adversity, and I’m just proud of the way the kids played; they played their butts off,” Rios said. “(Our team) did things right, we came up a little short, but it wasn’t because of effort. And, you know, the kids played hard. (Taft) just made a play at the end, and you have to give them credit.”
The Badgers take a break this week for their bye, and will look toward the beginning of District 16-3A, Division I play next week against Aransas Pass.
Rios said Bishop has faced some tough competition and he is looking forward to the bye week to rest up before the toughest part of the schedule.
“Now we enter the tough part of our schedule. Believe it or not, it gets tougher,” Rios said. “Aransas Pass is good. They have a lot of kids back from last year. They’re a big, physical team, so we have to regroup. The bye week comes at a perfect time because we need to heal. We’ve got a lot of people hurt. But I know our kids, we’re going to play hard and we’ll be okay.”
The Badgers will play Aransas Pass next Thursday on the road at 7:30 p.m.