Pleasanton tops Lampasas

Last minute score lifts Eagles


Pleasanton Head Coach Stephen Liska talks to the Eagles after the 28-27 bi-district win over Lampasas on Friday night in Kerrvile. The win was Liska’s 32nd at Pleasanton since his arrival in 2017. J GARCIA| PLEASANTON EXPRESS

Pleasanton Head Coach Stephen Liska talks to the Eagles after the 28-27 bi-district win over Lampasas on Friday night in Kerrvile. The win was Liska’s 32nd at Pleasanton since his arrival in 2017. J GARCIA| PLEASANTON EXPRESS

In their two district losses this season the Pleasanton Eagles had entered the fourth quarter holding a lead before losing that lead and eventually the game. Last Friday the Eagles went into the fourth quarter of their bi-district playoff game against Lampasas holding a 21-14 lead.

Once again the Eagles were unable to hold on to the lead, but lessons learned in those district losses paid off when it mattered most.

“We talked about those games this week. We played some good ball clubs and it prepared us for this.” Pleasanton Head Coach Stephen Liska said. “I’m so proud of my kids and the way they battled.”

After the Badgers scored to take a 27-21 lead with 2:38 left in regulation, the Eagles were able to block the extra point. Pleasanton then drove 63 yards in 1:37 to take a 28-27 lead with 1:01 left in the game when Sean Ramos threw a 29-yard touchdown pass to Jayden Palacios.

Just 11 seconds after taking the lead, the Eagles punched their ticket to the Area round when Juan Lopez intercepted a Badger pass.

Joel Arevalo runs with the ball during the Eagles bi-district game against Lampasas last Friday night. Arevalo ran for 142 yards on 31 carries and scored a touchdown. J GARCIA| PLEASANTON EXPRESS

Joel Arevalo runs with the ball during the Eagles bi-district game against Lampasas last Friday night. Arevalo ran for 142 yards on 31 carries and scored a touchdown. J GARCIA| PLEASANTON EXPRESS

“We changed formation with a minute left and Coach (Danny) Sanchez put me in the middle of the field” Lopez said. “It put me in the perfect position to make the interception.”

The rest of the game was just as exciting as the final two minutes. For one thing, the two teams were near equal. Pleasanton had 427 yards of offense compared to 413 for Lampasas. Pleasanton had 286 passing yards and 141 rushing yards. Lampasas had 280 passing yards and 133 rushing yards. The Eagles and Badgers both had 21 first downs. Pleasanton had the ball for 26:19 of game time compared to 21:30 for Lampasas.

Lampasas got on the board first with a 22- yard touchdown pass at the 3:48 mark of the first quarter.

Pleasanton answered on their next drive with a four-yard touchdown pass from Sean Ramos to Jayden Palacios. Jose Angel-Perez added the extra point to tie the score at 7-7 with 14 seconds left in the first quarter.

Jayden Palacios (13) celebrates with Jayce Krauskopf (21) after scoring a touchdown against Lampasas last Friday night in Kerrville. J GARCIA | PLEASANTON EXPRESS

Jayden Palacios (13) celebrates with Jayce Krauskopf (21) after scoring a touchdown against Lampasas last Friday night in Kerrville. J GARCIA | PLEASANTON EXPRESS

Ramos and Palacios connected again on a 56-yard touchdown pass with 7:34 left in the second quarter to put Pleasanton up 14-7.

Ramos finished the night with 16 completions out of 27 attempted passes for 286 yards three touchdowns and an interception. Palacios ended up with seven catches for 161 yards and three touchdowns.

“It means everything just to be able to be here on this field next to my brothers,” Ramos said after the game. “It felt great to be on the right side (of a fourth quarter score).”

Lampasas tied the score at 14-14 with 6:40 left in the second quarter, less than a minute after Pleasanton had gone in front. That proved to be the final points for either team until the final play of the third quarter. On that play Joel Arevalo scored on a five-yard run to give Pleasanton a 21-14 lead after three quarters.

Lampasas scored on their next two possessions. The first score, a 24-yard touchdown pass, tied the game at 21-21 with 10:17 left in the fourth quarter. The second was the touchdown scored with 2:38 remaining.

The Pleasanton Eagles will play in the area round this Thursday night for the first time since 2017 when they host the Beeville Jones Trojans. Kickoff at Eagles Stadium is scheduled for 7 p.m. The winner of Pleasanton vs Beeville Jones will move on to face the winner of Calallen vs Fredericksburg in the regional semifinals.

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