The El Campo Ricebird varsity team didn’t just beat the Boeren-Champion Chargers, but so did the entire program.
One of the program’s three wins over the Chargers was a little more special than just a normal victory.
The Ricebirds junior varsity 46-0 blowout win over the Chargers not only closed non-district play undefeated but for some of the football players, it was their 31st win in a row.
Twelve sophomore players, have gone through seventh grade, eighth grade, freshman football and now five games of junior varsity without losing.
Sophomores, Drake Resendez, Oliver Miles, Ja’Kourayn Shorter, Alekzander Harper, Chase Macek, Gabriel Ortiz, Jake Samaripa, Teagan Gallegos, Cole Dewey, Nicolas Debo, Adan Juarez and Gjabree Allen, have grown up together as football players and they hope to continue the streak well beyond 31 wins.
“I think it’s good, we’ve been working hard every day in practice,” Miller, the quarterback said.
“Being 31-0 is a great accomplishment,” Gallegos said. “We came all the way from seventh grade, coming out here (every day) working. Every day is a battle when we’re out here.”
A few have even played together longer than four years as teammates in youth football in El Campo.
“There is nothing in this world that I would trade (for these guys),” Dewey said. “I love these boys to death and I’ve grown such a good bond with them.”
“These are my brothers. I know they are going to block for me,” Resendez a running back said. “They’re going to do what they got to do to get a hole and I trust them with my whole heart.”
Through seventh grade year, they went 8-0. They added another eight wins as eighth-graders. In high school, as freshmen, they tore through teams en route to a 10-0 record.
They faced tough challenges as freshmen, notably against Bay City. The Blackcats without a freshmen team took on the baby Birds with their junior varsity, yet it was still El Campo who came out on top.
The win streak has been something the group has thought of over the years.
“Every game,” they said in unison.
Each year has been different for the group of Birds.
Some football players left the team and some new players added over the years. Once in high school, St. Philips Catholic School football players get mixed in.
At the start of this year, they, along with the whole program, had to learn a new system from El Campo’s new coaching staff and despite the changes year over year, they’ve kept on winning.
“We’ve played (together) since seventh grade and not (with) the same people every day. This year we had to change at the beginning and run whole new plays and build off that and become a better team,” Miller said.
According to the group, the toughest threat to their perfect record came this year. Against the Fulshear Chargers, a larger 5A school, their junior varsity took El Campo to the limit, but they came out with a 14-6 victory to keep perfection alive.
While the 12 have 31 wins, they are just a small part of the junior varsity team that is making waves this year that they hope will continue through the rest of the season.
“We have some new (players this year),” Dewey said. “We just really need to create a bond with (everyone) like we did with the sophomore group and we’re working on that.”
Along with the 12, the junior varsity roster, includes juniors, Christian Miles, Cruz Gonzales, Trevon Jackson, Corey Schooler, Nicholas Hernandez, Joel Garcia, Karmello Brown, Joshua Gore, Craig Washington, Quentin Norman, Connor King, Juan Martinez and Jaylin Hawkins. Fellow sophomores: La’Darian Lewis, Mason Bystrek, Jansen Connor, Davin Hicks, Johnathan Hernandez, Lazarus Hernandez, Jaime Leal and Darius Shropshire. The junior varsity is also getting contributions from three freshmen in Peyton Perkins, Camdyn Phillips and James Dorotik.
“They’re a fun group to coach,” El Campo junior varsity coach Roberto Perez said. “We had a coming to Jesus meeting this week about doing things the right way and good things can happen and how it can snowball. They had a good week of practice. Good week of morning weights. Good warmup and they’re finally seeing the light. They realize when they do things we ask them to the right way, good things happen.”
The junior varsity team has not allowed more than 10 points once this season. Through five games, they are outscoring teams 154-36.