McALLEN — McAllen Memorial running back Campbell Speights has been gearing up to power past another milestone amidst a sensational 2019 season.
The Mustangs’ senior back has galloped for 1,707 yards and 27 touchdowns on the ground off 172 carries. He’s the Valley’s leading rusher narrowly edging our La Joya Palmview’s Carlos Pena (1,697) and Hidalgo’s Zach Carrera (1,691), and ranks second in total rushing yards and third in touchdowns across Texas at the 6A level according to MaxPreps.
Speights has tallied 16 straight games in which he’s run for 100 yards or more and recorded his 100th career rushing touchdown in a 49-0 Week 9 win over La Joya Juarez-Lincoln.
He has the chance to hit several more momentous milestones before season’s end too. Given his average yards per carry and yards per game out of the backfield, it’s safe to assume Speights should eclipse the 2,000-yard mark for the season in the next week or two.
But he also has a chance to set some personal records as well. Speights needs 320 ore rushing yards to reach 7,000 for his career and three more scores on the ground to break his previous career best for touchdowns in season (29).
He’ll have an opportunity to push toward all three milestones when the Mustangs face the PSJA North Raiders (4-4, 2-3) at 7:30 p.m. Friday in Pharr.
ELIZONDO, RANGEL AIDING PSJA NORTH IN NEW ROLES
The PSJA North Raiders answered two questions at once in their 43-26 win over the La Joya Coyotes in Week 9: How best to utilize senior quarterback Iziaah Rangel and how to increase offensive production behind center.
Rangel was actually playing his best game in weeks against La Joya before the coaching staff decided to make a change at quarterback. In stepped in backup Trey Elizondo, who showed flashes of promise when he filled in as the team’s starter in a Week 3 loss at Weslaco High.
Elizondo entered the contest with PSJA North in a 20-7 hole in the early part of the second quarter. He and the Raiders would respond to the signal caller shakeup by outscoring the Coyotes 36-6 for the rest of the game and provided some needed balance to their offense.
Elizondo completed six of seven passes for 101 yards and a touchdown after coming in midway through the contest. Rangel, meanwhile, threw for 54 yards and an interception on five of seven passing before being pulled, but was actually more effective and impactful afterward.
He moved out to wide receiver upon Elizondo’s arrival and led the team’s passing attack as a pass catcher, totaling 100 yards on five receptions which were both team highs.
The highly effective battery of Elizondo and Rangel will look to keep their newfound momentum rolling at home against the McAllen Memorial Mustangs (7-1, 4-1) at 7:30 p.m. Friday.
POTENTIAL PLAYOFF SCENARIOS FOR 30-6A
With only two weeks remaining in the regular season, the contenders are separating themselves from the rest and the playoff picture is becoming increasingly clearer.
Two teams clinched postseason berths and another was eliminated from contention after Week 9’s results.
Mission and PSJA High’s pair of big wins last week secure playoff spots for both the Eagles and Bears, who will both be making repeat trips to the postseason. Meanwhile, McAllen High and La Joya Juarez-Lincoln were both eliminated from playoff contention following blowout Week 9 losses for each.
That leaves two open spots for four squads. McAllen Memorial and McAllen Rowe hold the inside track for those spots now, but PSJA North and La Joya High still have outside shots at cracking the top four.
The Raiders would need to win out against McAllen Memorial and McHi, while also hoping the Mustangs fall to Rowe in their season finale, to earn a fourth-place tie breaker.
The Coyotes would need to win the rest of their remaining games, too, against Rowe and Mission, while also needing the Warriors to lose again to McAllen Memorial in Week 11. That would give La Joya a fourth place tie breaker over Rowe and the final playoff spot.
The Mustangs and Warriors each control their own destiny from this point forward, while Memorial can punch its ticket to the playoffs with a win this week over PSJA North.