Game of the Year
Owls vs. Broncos
It is finally here. The game that has been circled on the Reagan County Owls' schedule all year has finally arrived.
"We've tried our best to take this year one game at a time," Coach Ken Campbell said. "But the Sonora game was always there in the back of our mind."
The game has major playoff and district implications with the winner likely taking home the district crown.
"I think we have a really good team," Sonora Coach David Sine said. "But Reagan County is the team to beat in West Texas. They are a well coached team with a perfect record. That is no small task."
Sonora brings with them a 6-1 season record with one district win (48-14 over Alpine) under their belt.
The Broncos only loss came during their Homecoming to #2 Iraan.
Both Reagan County and Sonora are scoring 45 points per game this year, but each team is doing it in drastically different ways.
"This is the ultimate battle of old school versus new school," Campbell said. "We are an old school team. We want to run the ball at you and wear you down. We want to break you in the second half with physical play at the line."
Coach Sine said his team approaches things from another angle.
"We have a lot of playmakers across the field," Sine said. "We want to get the ball in their hands in space. We want to kill with our speed and do it with the big play."
Sine said his team also adds new formations each week to make it difficult for their opponents to prepare for them.
"We added two formations last week against Alpine," Sine said. "This week we are adding three for Reagan County. We want to be hard to prepare for."
Coach Campbell said he and his staff are very aware of Sonora's desire to change things up each week.
"It really makes you go back to basics on defense," Campbell said. "You have to scale things back a little until you figure it out. Then it is about in game adjustments. We have a great coaching staff, and very coachable players. We will be ready."
The Owls' defensive secondary will be tested by Sonora in ways they haven't seen all season.
"It is important that we keep plays in front of us," Campbell said. "The four guys in our secondary are very, very good. I know they will be able to handle Sonora's offense. The issue we have is depth at those positions."
Coach Sine said he and his coaching staff are preparing for the Owls' defense by game planning around what he views as Reagan County's strengths.
"We have to stop Tyler Aguero from getting pressure on us in the backfield," Sine said. "At the next level we have to block Nathan DeLeon at his linebacker position, and watch for Zach Adams at safety."
Campbell said his team has difficulty preparing for Sonora in practice because of their sheer speed.
"You can't really simulate that," Campbell said. "We aren't worried about it though. Our guys will make the adjustment early in the game and then it will be business as usual."
Campbell said he feel the Owls have an advantage on the offensive and defensive line.
"Our offensive line is going to open up holes for us to run through," Campbell said. "The difference this week is Sonora will close them quickly because of their speed. We have to be comfortable with the gains we get and not force it."
Coach Sine agreed that the advantage up front will go to the Owls.
"They have excellent linemen this year," Sine said. "I know three of them did really well in powerlifting a year ago. We don't have that. Our guys are strong, but Reagan County has really improved in that area."
Sine also said he has been impressed with the number of running backs the Owls have this year coming out of the backfield.
"I don't remember that from the Owls last year," Sine said. "I remember returning home from watching the Ballinger game thinking about how well Coach Campbell was able to keep fresh legs in the backfield."
The Reagan County Owls are led on offense this season by Carlos DelRio from his fullback position with 112 yards per game and 15 total touchdowns. DelRio is on pace to pass the 1,000 yard mark on the season (he currently has 895 rushing yards) against Sonora if he can keep his production up.
The Owls are averaging 329 yards rushing per game this season while Sonora is averaging 295 passing yards on the year.
It is hard to draw a direct comparison between the Owls 8-0 record and Sonora's 6-1, but the two teams do have one mutual opponent in Ozona.
The Owls defeated the Lions 49-21 in Week 5 while Sonora beat them 46-6 to open the season.
Reagan County's eight opponents have a winning percentage of 27 percent on the season (combined opponent record of 16-42), while Sonora's seven opponents have a winning percentage of 44 percent on the season (combined opponent record of 22-28).
Everyone is encouraged to come out and support our Reagan County Owls as they seek perfection against Sonora!
Senior Night festivities will be prior to the game at 7 p.m. Kickoff is at 7:30 p.m.