Excuses are not what we usually talk about here at Play to Win. The circumstances do make a difference, but in the long haul, wins and losses and memories is what you seniors will remember 20 years from now. You will remember forever beating Brownwood. And while Brownwood may not have topped the 3-A charts this 2013, do remember…they too made the State play-offs. Llano beat three district foes with enrolments of nearly 2,800 students, to the LHS rolls showing 498. The horrible situation set by the UIL for smaller schools like Llano over the past 4 years is criminal. LLano had good players….Llano had competitive teams….but you can only last so long swing for the fences with a tooth pick. Still, the Jackets prevailed. We still are the giant killers, and in 2014, few teams will look forward to playing Llano. The tradition has carried Llano thru tough times before, and it also did in 2013. The seniors of 2013 had a fun run, and super memories by all will only grow as time passes. Believe me on that.
Seniors such as Gilberto Arredondo who played a gigantic role on the team the past two seasons should see after season honors, but he was so consistant for the Jackets. Eli Tiffin played both ways many games, and leadership was his biggest contribution. Great player for two seasons. Seniors Jordan Blackmon was special in many areas, but special teams was where he saw him every week. Senior linebacker Caleb Penny will be a senior not replaced. Hard hitter, played like a proud Yellow Jacket every single play. Don’t know where Ryan Mansell came from, but golly, what a great defensive end. Sacks, pressure on quarterbacks, something Llano had to have this season. Ryan filled the need. Lineman Jordan Webb, Andrew Stribling and Blain Steffen were little recognized, but our lineman blocked well enough to have a quarterback end his career as best passer all-time! Someone was blocking. Great season to you all. Our defensice secondary was good to very good at times. Elizar Villegas just showed up everyday for work, and did his job…so unnoticed, so good. Kralen Dickerson with 4 interceptions, Tyler Stiles (Starting QB when Rabb when out, 9 for 12, 117 yards TD pass….I would retire with those numbers), Tristan Lynch , Grant Jones, had sound seasons…in a pass happy era of today, some nites just get long. But for seniors Mason Ladd and Sawyer Stiles each made long nites for others. Two great players with great over-all careers. Tight ends Erich Burch and Harley Shoemate were good blockers, but added greatly to special teams. Good tacklers. Missed getting to see more of Baylor Jordan due to injury from the wide receiver position. But Justin Long was the best special team player, leading the team with 9 solo tackles and bunches of assists. Great hard working senior. Carter Tatsch is in the record book with one super game, and 927 yards rushing, averaging over 5 yards per carry, along with 9 TDs. Great senior running back. Wish we had had Chance Ware for about three more seasons…great speed, great return man, name is in the record book at several places…gosh Chance, I hardly got to know you, and will now miss you. Issac Hutto was super. Should be all everything, but know holds school record as best punter ever….third all-time leading pass receiver…many big games…he was it all…someday will make the LHS Hall of Fame…and Layton Rabb…holds nearly every passing record…I will not go thru everytime he is on the books, but my spell check stopped correcting me after several dozen entries of his name…22 games as starting QB over three seasons…it was fun to watch. I hope I did not leave a senior out. I love you all…this last Play To Win for 2013 is always the worst…knowing now you have other missions and jobs to go do. Just go about it like you all did as Yellow Jackets…then you will love the memories. Go to Yellow Jacket Records…should you see mistakes or omissions, please e-mail me…I keep trying to get it correct!