And the final score of the regular season was a microcosm, both of the champion’s run to historic heights and of the dynamic duo’s continued and exceptional excellence.
Fifteen minutes from the final horn, Ayssa Ozuna sailed a picture-perfect corner from out of the shadows at Richard R. Flores Stadium. Just outside the six-yard box, Krysta Armstrong rose gracefully to slot the pass, completing a 4-0 Econ victory over Vela. Just another moment of magic from the undefeated 31-6A queens, a fitting end to their total domination in 2017.
One penalty-kick win away from a spotless 42-point performance in the league, the Lady Jags advance into the postseason now, against Brownsville Hanna, the fourth seed from 31-6A, and Econ – a senior-led side with talent and experience to burn – is intent on keeping the journey alive deep into the playoffs.
It was proper that the last score of the regular season be executed flawlessly by Ozuna and Armstrong, because those two stars have been at the fore of the team’s drive for back-to-back titles. With her relentless pursuit of the ball, Ozuna has been a killer as always. The deft and skilled Armstrong has been every bit as amazing, and of course the tandem will be playing at Sul Ross together next season.
Now for some Second Season action, and Vela, too, will be involved, as the third seed from 31-6A; the Lady SaberCats will take on Harlingen South in bi-district, with goal hound Chery Chavez leading the way for a club that returned to 6A this season and enjoyed a very credible pair of league legs, winning nine times in sum.
The postseason begins next week, leaving those two city clubs, along with North (fourth seed, will face imposing Los Fresnos in bi-district) to practice, plan, and train during Spring Break. Last season was not the best for the city squads but the Lady Jags are an overwhelming favorite to take a first-round win and even odds to advance three deep.
NORTH IS BOYS’ KING; JAGS SECOND
While the girls’ group produced three playoff teams, the boys managed two, as the pair of North and Econ came 1-2 in the 31-6A standings. With their rivals in 32-6A yet to complete the season, opponents for the Coogs and Jags in bi-district were yet to be determined. But champion North will move forward with one of the Valley’s strongest defensive contingents, and the Jags are pinning their hopes on athleticism and quick-strike ability.