The Class A Division I No. 10 May Tigers and the Class 2A Division I No. 3 San Saba Armadillos look to extend their lengthy win streaks as postseason action for both teams begins Thursday night.
May (9-1), a winner of nine in a row, tangles with the Robert Lee Steers (6-3) at 7:30 p.m. at Santa Anna in Region IV bi-district playoff action, while San Saba (10-0), fresh off another undefeated regular season, clashes with the Riesel Indians (4-6) at 7 p.m. in McGregor in a Region II opening round tilt.
The Tigers are the champions of District 14, their fourth straight league crown, while Robert Lee is an uncharacteristic second seed from District 13. The Steers were defeated by Veribest, 38-34, on Oct. 11, but Veribest was later forced to forfeit the game due to practicing longer than allowed by the UIL. Robert Lee then moved from third place in the league standings to second after that decision was upheld.
The two-time District 7 champion Armadillos outscored their foes 563-44 during the regular season and only one opponent registered more than one touchdown in any game this season. Riesel snagged the fourth playoff seed in District 8 with a 3-3 league mark with wins over Moody (64-48), Axtell (54-8) and Itasca (28-20) to go along with losses to Bosqueville (49-29), Bruceville-Eddy (34-16) and Italy (58-32).
May heads into the postseason producing 58 points and 337 yards — 226 rushing and 111 passing — per game, while allowing 22.5 points on average.
Leading the charge on the ground for the Tigers are Isidro Salinas (807 yards, 14 TDs), Rory Bustamante (496 yards, 9 TDs), Blake Harrell (478 yards, 11 TDs), Kaden Halk (249 yards, 7 TDs), and Lane McGinn (107 yards, 3 TDs).
Top passers are Harrell (519 yards, 12 TDs), Bustamante (350 yards, 7 TDs, 1 INT), Ethan Self (101 yards, 4 TDs) and Seth Johnston (100 yards, 3 TDs).
Receiving threats include Salinas (19-331, 6 TDs), Tyler Wheeler (14-281, 9 TDs), Keith Cross (7-167, 3 TDs), and Chris Flenniken (11-149, 4 TDs).
On the defensive end, May is led by Salinas (79 tackles, six fumble recoveries, two interceptions), Flenniken (53 tackles, seven fumble recoveries, two interceptions), Harrell (53 tackles, four fumble recoveries, three interceptions), Halk (47 tackles, one fumble recovery), and McGinn (42 tackles, one interception).
San Saba is churning out 486 yards — 327 rushing and 159 passing — per outing, while the defense has collected 129 tackles for loss, 28 sacks and 24 turnovers.
The ground game is anchored by Eli Salinas (1,443 yards, 19 TDs) and Sean O'Keefe (1,278 yards, 21 TDs), while O'Keefe (918 yards, 18 TDs, 1 INT) and Risien Shahan (420 yards, 5 TDs, 1 INT) lead the air attack. Top receivers include Logan Glover (18-473, 8 TDs), Salinas (16-495, 6 TDs), Juan Ramirez (13-170, 4 TDs), Cole Bryant (9-149, 2 TDs) O'Keefe (9-136, TD) and Abel Martinez (7-145, 4 TDs).
The Armadillos defense has been spearheaded by Landon Yarbrough (150 tackles, 22 for loss, 4 sacks), Shahan (111 tackles, 20 for loss, 6 sacks), Stone Sears (85 tackles, 15 for loss, 2 sacks), Bryant (60 tackles, 9 for loss, 2 sacks) and Glover (41 tackles, 7 INTs).
If May wins, it will face either Nueces Canyon (8-2) or Zephyr (4-6) in the second round.
If San Saba is successful, Wolfe City (8-2) or Collinsville (5-5) awaits in the second round.