It looks as if ‘Big Red’ is back in East El Paso, as the Bel Air Highlanders dominated the Andress Eagles 38 to 7.
It was a dominating performance led by quarterback Jesus Contreras, who accounted for four of the team’s five touchdowns. Contreras finished the night completing 11 of 18 passes for 148 yards and three touchdowns and another score on the ground, but he was quick to turn his attention to their next opponent.
“It feels great, but now we got the Eastwood Troopers and we’re just working to play them,” Contreras said. “I expected this from this team, they’re a good group of guys. They o-line played great, defense played great, we all played great.”.
The Highlanders jumped to a 13-0 lead before allowing the only touchdown on a 90-yard kick return by Andress’ Rober Wiggins in the first quarter. It was all Bel Air for the remainder of the game, as they scored 25 unanswered points.
“They just did a fantastic job on both sides of the ball. We knew our offense would be on from last week,” Cervantes said. “But I really have to hand it to our defense, they scored to shutouts in a row. For our defense to hold a team like Andress out of the end zone, it’s a fantastic job.”
The Highlanders’ defense has yet to allow a touchdown from their opposition, blanking Austin 48-0 the previous week and giving up their only touchdown from a kick return.
Highlanders head coach, Tony Cervantes pointed out his defense performance, which held the Eagles under 100 yards of offense for the entire game.
Another bright spot for the Highlanders was their running game, led by Andrew Chaffino who rushed the ball for 121 yards on 19 carries and a touchdown.
“We know we have a couple of good running backs…we know we can run the rock,” Cervantes said. “If it turns out that way and we’re able to hold on to the ball, but the name of the game is scoring, and that’s our goal every time we’re in the red zone to put up seven points.”
Chaffino managed to gain most of his yardage on short runs that kept the Highlanders offense on the field for the majority of the game.
“I couldn’t have done it without my linemen, they were a big impact to my running,” Chaffino said. “That’s really all I need to say, they were a big impact.”
The Highlanders leaned their running game most of the night to get their first downs and looked to their quarterback to finish the drives through the air when they were in the red zone.
Bel Air now looks to Eastwood, in the hopes of remaining undefeated for their last non-district match up. It’s a game they head into with confidence.
“We had high expectations, because of the returners from last season,” Cervantes said. “They worked really hard in the spring and even harder in the summer… next week is going to be another big game. It’s the battle of the helmets. I think our kids will get ready and be focused.”
The Highlanders improve to 2-0 on the season, while Andress drops to 0-2.