Here’s a rundown of high school football action from this past weekend across the Rio Grande Valley from every Class 6A game in Hidalgo County that the RGVSports.com staff was unable to cover live.
PSJA NORTH 48, EDINBURG ECONOMEDES 21: At Pharr, the PSJA North Raiders found themselves locked in a back-and-forth affair against the Edinburg Economedes Jaguars on Thursday night.
The Raiders were looking to rebound from a season-opening road 33-13 loss to the Mercedes Tigers in The Monitor’s Game of the Week, while the Jags were making their season debut in the District 31-6A opener for both teams.
Economedes and PSJA North traded touchdowns back and forth throughout an exciting first half that culminated in a 21-21 score at halftime.
That’s when the Raiders flipped a switch and changed the course of the game. PSJA North pitched a defensive shutout in the second half and scored four unanswered touchdowns riding a strong showing from junior running back Isaac Gonzalez to a big home victory.
Gonzalez, a 2019 All-Valley selection who ran for 120 yards and a touchdown against Mercedes, tallied four touchdowns on the ground to lead his team to victory.
“Last week we kind of laid an egg when we were playing out at Mercedes,” PSJA North head coach Marcus Kaufmann said. “The kids were learning and we were learning the kids trying to figure out where to play them and what we were doing. We’ve got a long way to go to be a good football team, but we’re on the right track. Our kids are growing, getting better and showing a lot more confidence in what they’ve been doing.”
PSJA North (1-1, 1-0) will have a bye this week before returning to action for the Tri-City Classic rivalry game against the PSJA High Bears at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 5 in Pharr, while Economedes (0-1, 0-1) will host the Edinburg High Bobcats (0-1, 0-1) at 7:30 p.m. on Friday in Edinburg.
HARLINGEN SOUTH 44, DONNA NORTH 13: At Donna, the Hawks rolled to a big season-opening road win to put a damper on first-year head coach Juan Cuevas’ coaching debut with the Chiefs on Friday night.
Harlingen South hit the ground running in the District 32-6A opener for both teams, but Donna North struck first on an 18-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Aiden Gomez. The Chiefs junior signal-caller also threw two interceptions against the Hawks and a separate 18-yard passing touchdown to bookend scoring in the fourth quarter.
But everything in between was all Hawks, as Harlingen South scored 44 unanswered points throughout the meat of the contest.
The team tallied 264 yards and five touchdowns on the ground while adding 166 yards through the air on 6-of-12 passing. The Hawks’ defense also scored on a 41-yard interception return for a touchdown in the second quarter and a safety in the fourth.
“We’ve got some new names and new faces that we think are going to make some noise on Friday nights. You’ll be seeing their names in the paper because we’re working hard,” Cuevas said of his Donna North squad. “It’s been an adjustment, but I feel that our coaching staff in general, our trainers, our players, everybody is on board and buying in because they know that this season, first and foremost, is about the health and safety of coaches and our student-athletes. Things so far have been very positive and I’m very pleased with the way everyone has been working together to follow the plan to be able to get on the football field, and same thing with volleyball, cross country, golf and tennis, to where we can get to compete in this very uncertain time during this pandemic. I’m very proud of our staff, coaches, trainers and extracurricular coordinator Ramiro Leal.”
Donna North (0-1, 0-1) will travel to take on the Edcouch-Elsa Yellow Jackets (1-0, 0-0) in a non-district contest at 7:30 p.m. Friday night after a scheduled district contest against Weslaco High was canceled, while Harlingen South (1-0, 1-0) will host the Harlingen High Cardinals (1-0, 0-0) in the Bird Bowl at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Boggus Stadium in Harlingen.
HARLINGEN HIGH AT WESLACO HIGH, CANCELED: At Weslaco, the scheduled season opener for the Cardinals and Panthers was called off due to multiple positive COVID-19 tests within the Panthers’ football program according to Weslaco ISD.
Harlingen High was able to find a replacement opponent, the McAllen Memorial Mustangs, after both teams had opponents cancel games against them this week. The Cardinals won 21-6 in what was the season opener for both teams.
Meanwhile, at Weslaco High, coaches and student-athletes will have to self-quarantine at home for two weeks and suspend practice during that time.
The Panthers will be coming back to some schedule changes too, as the news of their canceled contest with the Cardinals persuaded 32-6A coaches to change some things up, which included adopting a zone schedule.
Weslaco and Harlingen (1-0, 0-0) will now tee it up against one another on Nov. 13, while the Panthers will play their season opener against Harlingen South (1-0, 1-0) at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 6 at Bobby Lackey Stadium in Weslaco.