At the West Columbia seven-on-seven State Qualifying Tournament Saturday morning, El Campo played three games and did not advance out of their bracket.
While El Campo lost to Wharton in the first game, they came back and played two good games, nearly advancing to the Semi-finals.
Starting early in the morning, El Campo was drilled by Wharton’s air attack and they fell 46-12 to start the West Columbia Tournament.
El Campo in the second game played a tough Bay City team. Tied 12-12, the two teams went into overtime. Junior Clay Jung picked off a Bay City pass, but the Ricebirds stalled on their offensive possession to push the game to a second overtime. Bay City picked up two short completions, but the Ricebirds held them out of the end zone. Jung hit sophomore Nathan Willis over the middle to cap off the win over Bay City 18-12.
Against West Columbia, the eventual State qualifiers, El Campo’s offense finally got to stretch their legs as they scored 34 points.
In the second half, El Campo outscored West Columbia 22-18. While they won the second half, they had too much ground to overcome as West Columbia scored on nearly every possession and they lost 44-34.
El Campo played with a smaller group of guys then normal, counting on a handful of freshmen to make and come up with big plays in West Columbia.
This Saturday El Campo’s seven-on-seven squad will be looking to qualify for State at the Rockport State Qualifying Tournament.
In Rockport, El Campo will play seven-on-seven squads from Jourdanton, George West and Ingleside. All three schools made the playoffs in football last season. None of the four made the State seven-on-seven tournament. Two teams will advance to the semi-finals and they’ll play whoever advances out of Rockport-Fulton, Pleasanton, Kingsville Academy and Karnes City.
El Campo is looking to make a return to the State seven-on-seven tournament. El Campo’s last appearance was in 2017 when they advanced to the championship bracket, but got a bad matchup and lost to eventual champions, Graham in the first round.