Seniors Can Be proud of 2019

The let down after the last football game every season is not measured in feet and inches, but in miles….just as there are few better feelings than beating Hondo, or Brady or Cuero…nothing worse than the last game.

Every team in 4 AAAA, Division II gets the same feeling every year, except one.  Last year, only Cuero was happy at the end of the season.  Llano had disappointments, but those games cannot overcome the joy of a very good season.  Accomplishments that no other Yellowjacket teams have ever had.

Just to mention a few.  Highest scoring Jacket team in history.  434 points. Over 36 points a game.  Yardage…4,729 -, second most ever…EVER!!! And while most players rarely see their names in print, that should not matter.  These senior lineman can go forward to know how special their  team was.  And you had a big hand in it all.   Heath Godfrey, Lewis McTighe, Jose Villa, Jacob Bubenick, and Edgardo Resendiz blocked for Llano’s best.  Do not like to bring this in the mix, but I am unable to better describe it.   In 1967, I was a senior tight end.  Randy Scott was our tailback.  The entire offensive line wanted Randy to get to 1,000 yards.  A 1,000 yards rushing 51 years ago was very special. We worked on it every game.  And Randy’s  name is in the record books today.  I still feel pretty darn proud that as a lineman blocking for Randy, that I helped get to that magic benchmark.  BBQ ICON, Terry Wootan was the starting center. John Krauss and Billy Whitson were our guards.  Joe (Joe’s fame) Lawley, and Steven Dansby were the tackles.  We accoplished something pretty special in 1967.  You accomplised something even more special as a team, in 2019.

The 2019 defensive line was so good.  The grunt workers…No better than Jacob Cruz, who was able to stay healthy all season, and lead the team in sacks.  So quick…great, great senior year.   But when well, Jansen Morris was unblockable.  Missed a few games, but still one of the leading tacklers on the team.  Another great senior season. Hard to replace Jansens’ play. Utility players like  Matthew Ibanez played strong and with great effort when occasions arose.  The Jackets have two great juniors coming back next season in Guillermo Davila and Cade Ligon to continue the tradition of these very good defensive lineman.

Jacket linebackers were some of the best ever.  Seniors Ryan Warner, Logan Duggar, Aaron Inge, Juan Flores, and Quentin Franklin all were tops.  Ryan made so many big, big plays.  Logan so quick to the ball, and don’t forget his TD return of a blocked field goal against Lake View. That is now in the record book.  Flores became so valuable when many times injuries forced Juan to play.  There was no drop off.  Aaron Inge too became a big contributor in district play.  Great play anywhere player.  And two year starter Quentin Franklin, a “high breed” linebacker who rushed the passer…great career ….so many big plays when Llano had to have them.

Jacket secondary was so strong, so solid…few ever times were we beat deep.  Speed at the corner came from senior Justin Yocum.  A special player that contributed on offense, and special teams.  Loved his hard play every game.  Tough guy, and one of the best in years at the corner.  Joe Reed came on strong as the season progressed.  Made a ton of tackles, and really made a difference in how strong and dependable the secondary developed into.  Randall Murray too made a difference, and picked up the effort as the season moved along.  Very solid open field tackler…quick…so good…And last but not least, safety Aaron Brown…maybe the most talented player on the team…best safety in many years to play for Llano…made tackle after tackle behind the line of scrimmage.  Was never beat deep that I saw…and so valuable when he helped out of offense…speed was WOW…with his catching of passes as a sophomore,and this season, see his name in the record books…great player that made great great plays.

Enough said about the records, but Braxton Vickers had his hand on most…Most yardage passing in a season (2,799) …most TD passes in a season…and career (36)…top 7 games in the top 30 games  passing all time…9 of Baxton’s 12 games started, were for over 200 yards…most yards passing in a play-off game (399).  And he had help in senior running back Donaven Arrellano who surprised many with very good speed.  Got the State Play-off game started against Devine with a 50 yard run on the second play, and had he not gotten hurt, would have passed the 1,000 yard mark for the year.  Over 1,000 yards rushing for his career.

The injury of senior John Roberts was a very tough loss for Llano, but his play was superb before that injury.  Wish him all the best.  And these seniors will be remembered.  I’ve been told that being remembered is one of life’s greatest wishes. Jacket fans everywhere will do just that.  And looking at the record book fifty years from now, someone will say,….”man, those 2019 Yellowjackets must have been pretty darn good”.

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