Central's Season Another One for the Books
SAN ANGELO, TX-- The Central Bobcat's season came to an end following a 55-37 loss to the Mansfield Tigers this past Friday.
While the season is over for the Bobcats, there is still plenty to look back on and be proud of from another historic season for Central.
Central finished the season 11-1. That record marks the third time in school history in which the Bobcats finished with one loss in back-to-back years. The last time that happened was back in the 1973-74 seasons under Coach Francis "Smitty" Hill and the first instance came back in the 1965-66 seasons while Emory Bellard was at the helm of Central.
The 11 wins also mark the fourth straight season where the Bobcats finished with more than 10 wins. The Bobcats have also now finished with five straight 10-win seasons, dating back to 2013.
This season's undefeated, 10-0 regular season also saw Central capture their fifth-consecutive district title.
The successful "Drive for Five" also saw Central into the playoffs for the eighth-straight season, going back to the 2010 season.
Individually, 2017 saw junior quarterback Maverick McIvor break out in his debut season as the Bobcat's starting signal caller. The son of former University of Texas standout Rick McIvor, Maverick exceeded expectations by going 261-421 passing with 43 touchdowns through the air and 3,371 passing yards. The junior also emerged as a true dual-threat quarterback by leading Central in rushing with 883 yards on the ground and eight rushing touchdowns. Overall, McIvor accounted for 4,254 of the Bobcat's 5,123 yards of total offense.
Senior receivers Jesse Scott Jr. and Henry Teeter also had great years to close the book on their high school careers.
Scott, after transferring to Central from Lake View in the spring of this year, finished the season with 14 total touchdowns and 956 receiving yards on 58 receptions.
Teeter was undoubtedly the top target for Central's aerial attack, hauling in 102 passes for 1,390 yards and 15 touchdowns this past season.
While the stats may say Scott and Teeter drove the Bobcat's offensive production, unsung heroes like senior receiver Jaden Coates stepped up when they were needed most.
In their tussle with Odessa Permian on October 27, a pair of special teams touchdowns by Coates were ultimately the difference in a game in which Central was held under 300 yards of total offense en-route to their 2017 district title.
It could be argued that Central's defense was a bigger proponent to the Bobcat's 11-1 season, however. Led by seniors Noah Gatton and Nick Hernandez, the Bobcats registered 78 tackles for a loss and 41 sacks. Gatton finished the year second on the team in sacks with six and first in TFLs at 15. With 13 TFLs, Hernandez was second on the team while leading Central in sacks with nine. That presence in their opponent's backfield made offensive production difficult against the Bobcat defense.
The Bobcats also won the turnover battle in 2017. Central created 20 takeaways while turning the ball over 17 times this season. Senior defensive back Gage Smith led Central with five interceptions in 2017.
Considering Central made this run with only six starters, a lion's share of the praise should fall on Central Head Coach Brent Davis and his staff.
With a solid core returning for Central, 2018 could be an even better season for the Bobcats.