SAN ANGELO, TX — The Snyder Tigers had no answer for Lake View quarterback Albert Rodriguez’s arm on Thursday night. The junior racked up 250 yards and 3 touchdowns through the air during an evening dominated by the Chiefs.
Things started off shaky, though. Lake View received the opening kickoff and, besides a 19 yard pass to wide-out Austin Bandy, could not get anything going. Johnny Espinosa nearly made an incredible catch over two Snyder defenders 40 yards downfield, but the referees ruled that he failed to maintain possession.
Lake View punted and Snyder started its opening drive on the 18 yard line. Running back Greg Williams broke a 25 yard run on first down and immediately followed it up with a 26 yarder. A couple of plays later, Williams had Snyder on the 6. Instead of feeding him again, however, Snyder brought in the heavy blockers and snapped the ball directly to backup quarterback/defensive back Cam Smith.
Smith tried to break through the middle, but a Lake View defender put his helmet right on the ball and sent it flying. Austin Bandy picked the ball up in the backfield and bolted into the end zone for a 94 yard touchdown.
From then on, it was all Lake View. Rodriguez’s arm was too much for Snyder, and he constantly found receivers over the top of the defense.
He spotted Bandy all alone in the end zone for a five yard touchdown after connecting with JJ Casarez for 53 yards. Casarez had made his way behind the Snyder defensive backs and would have walked into the end zone had he been able to keep his feet hauling in the slightly off-target pass.
On Lake View’s next offensive possession, running back Anthony Martinez caught a deep pass along the numbers for 21 yards. Rudy Martinez then took the ball 25 yards to the left pylon and into the end zone to make it 19-3.
The Chiefs’ defense continued to stop any glimmer of a Snyder drive, and gave the ball back to the offense with 4:25 left in the half. On second down, Rodriguez hit Bandy for his third touchdown of the night. This time it was a 74 yard deep ball that flew right over a Tiger defender’s hands. Just like his other two, Bandy waltzed in with no one around him.
Snyder stole the ball on Lake View’s 2-point conversion attempt and returned it themselves for two points making it a 25-5 halftime score.
The second half was full of long, methodical drives that drained the clock for both teams. Zeke Davila cut Snyder’s opening possession short with an interception on fourth down, and Rodriguez capitalized on it a couple of minutes later by finding Johnny Espinosa in the middle of the end zone for his first action of the night.
Snyder scored its first touchdown in the second quarter on a pass to Jayden Samaniego in the third quarter. They followed it up with a long drive that was punctuated with a 4th a 1 sneak at the goal line to make it 32-19 in the fourth quarter.
Snyder appeared to make a late push after that touchdown, but had no consistent passing game. When they did move the ball, it took too much time off the clock to pose any real threat. Long drives from Lake View also cut down the number of times Snyder would have the ball.
Anthony Martinez returned a late interception to the Snyder three yard line with 55 seconds left in the game to close things out 32-19.
The victory makes the Chiefs 3-0 and ties their best start to a season since 1983.
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