LA JOYA — Last season, Brownsville Pace took down La Joya Palmview 35-14 in Brownsville.
The Lobos were looking for revenge this time around, and it didn’t even take one play from scrimmage.
La Joya Palmview running back Carlos Peña, the state’s leading rusher in Class 5A, handled the opening kickoff at his 18-yard line and exploded down the left sideline for a Lobos touchdown.
And from that point forward, it was all Palmview.
“It set the tempo and it told the whole team that we were ready to play,” Palmview head coach Margarito Requenez said. “… Our kids had a sour taste from last year. We went to Brownsville, they had a very good team and they took it to us. Our kids wanted to have a better showing this week.”
The Lobos went on to win 42-21, their second consecutive 40-point performance in as many weeks after dropping 49 on PSJA Southwest in Week 5. It’s also Palmview’s fourth win in a row.
Palmview ran for 367 yards on the ground as Peña led the way with 142 yards, two rushing scores, the kickoff return for a TD and five extra points. He’s now up to 1,114 rushing yards and nine touchdown runs in six games.
“We just wanted to come out fast and it was a good start to the game. Tonight was a team-effort,” Peña said.
The Lobos stormed out to a 28-0 lead before Pace was able to get on the scoreboard. When they did, it was assisted by Palmview penalties. But it wasn’t nearly enough as the three-headed monster of Peña, AJ Chapa and Adrian Vasquez went to work.
“You don’t know who is going to get the ball,” Requenez said of the three runners in Palmview’s Wing-T backfield. “AJ Chapa has as much speed as Carlos Peña. Our bruiser is No. 40, Adrian Vasquez. He’s a powerful running back. It’s just great having three guys that we can spread the wealth with.”
Chapa hit pay dirt twice on the night as the sophomore finished with 102 yards.
“Our offensive line played great and did a good job up front of giving us room to run,” he said.
Quarterback David Gonzalez got in on the action as Palmview mounted a scoring drive just before the first half clock expired. Gonzalez dropped back as safety and part-time receiver Freddy Flores ran past a Pace defender and out-muscled him in the end zone for the score from 24-yards out. It was Gonzalez’s first touchdown throw on the year as the quarterback also added 30 yards on the ground.
La Joya Palmview is now 4-2 overall and 4-1 in district play and enter a next week. With just one loss in district and a game against Mission Veterans remaining on the schedule, the Lobos have their eyes on the 16-5A DI title.
“We want to win that gold ball,” Gonzalez said.
The loss was Brownsville Pace’s first in district as it falls to 4-2 on the year.