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Bryan Rudder exacts revenge, blows out Bastrop in season opener

Jim Irish
American-Statesman Correspondent
Bastrop coach Todd Patmon led the Bears to an opening-weekend 49-7 loss to Bryan Rudder Friday.

BASTROP After losing its previous two season openers to Bastrop, Bryan Rudder got a big dose of revenge, hammering the Bears 49-7 in the 2020 opener at Memorial Stadium on Friday.

Rudder quarterback EJ Ezar, the head coach’s son, had a night to remember, completing 27 of 38 passes for 361 yards and four touchdowns. He made only one mistake, an interception by Conrad Pace in the first quarter. Ezar spread out the offense, throwing to seven receivers.

Keithron Lee grabbed touchdown passes of 31, 25, 24 yards. He finished with five catches for 105 yards.

Lee also set up another touchdown with a quick 44-yard burst on a run in the second quarter.

Marcus Diles added six receptions for 106 yards, including a 35-yard touchdown.

Rudder’s defense limited Bastrop to four first downs and 138 total yards.

“They’re fast, quick, and aggressive,” Rudder coach Eric Ezar said about his defense. “We have some confidence in our defense that they’re going to be able to hold ‘em. That allows us as a player caller to take some chances and spread it out.”

The Bears used three quarterbacks. Senior Romello Flores Giles had the most success when he was inserted in the fourth quarter. He showed some aggressive running for 30 yards on five carries. He also completed 2-of-3 passes for 66 yards. He connected on a 60-yard scoring strike to Jalyn Cavazos, a senior playing in his first varsity game.

Starting quarterback Seth Mouser was only 2 of 12 for 4 yards and suffered one interception. He threw several passes out of bounds after being rushed.

Backup Luke Williams was 0-2 and had an interception.

“They’re more physical,” Bastrop coach Todd Patmon said. “A physical team dominates the line of scrimmage.”

As for Mouser and Williams playing in their first varsity games, Patmon said, “Varsity football happens fast. Against a defense like that, it’s even faster.”

Patmon was impressed with Rudder’s offensive line giving Ezar time to throw. He also said Ezar extended the plays.

“We got beat across the board,” Patmon said.