Odessa High football coach Dusty Ortiz, like most in his profession, has a 24-hour rule for his team after games to allow his players to celebrate a win or deal with a loss before focusing on the next game.
It was a moment of celebration for the Bronchos last week after beating San Angelo Central, 41-14, to return to level in District 2-6A.
The players may have stretched the 24 Hours a bit as it was the program’s first win in District 2-6A in nearly 1,100 days, dating back to October 2018, against Wolfforth Frenship.
“I didn’t really know about it,” Ortiz said of the struggles the Bronchos had gone through with opponents in the district.
“There are so many things that are firsts in the program or that haven’t been done here in a long time that I don’t even focus on it. My main goal is to be at the end of the season where we want to be and that’s in the playoffs. “
To keep that record alive, Odessa High must start another streak when he faces rivals Crosstown Permian at 7 p.m. Friday at Ratliff Stadium.
The Panthers have won the last seven meetings. A good omen for the Bronchos, however, is the last time they won the game (2013) was also the last time they made the playoffs.
This will be Odessa High-Permian’s first game for Ortiz and most of his staff and he is looking forward to the game, although he has tried to keep his players from getting too excited.
“I’ve tried to play it down, that it’s just another game and I know that with everything that’s going on it’s hard to do,” he said. “But they (the players) are focused and focused.
“The last time I coached in front of such a big crown was when we were playing Allen in the playoffs at Cowboys Stadium, so it’s been a while. But we are looking forward to it.
>> ENTIRE REHEARSALS: Normally, preparing for an optional infraction gives coaches a hard time, as it is difficult for a Scout team to replicate the nuances of the program in just three or four days.
Odessa High has the advantage of having already seen the option to attack this season… twice.
The first was against Amarillo Tascosa in the Bronchos scrum on August 20 at Dick Bivins Stadium in Amarillo.
The second came two weeks ago when Midland High showed Odessa High just how disciplined a defense needs to be to be successful as the Bulldogs amassed over 500 yards of attacking in an opening win of the District 2-6A at the Grande Communications stadium.
These contests gave Ortiz and his team a better understanding of what the Bronchos need to do to be successful on Friday.
“We don’t want them to dictate to us what they do to us offensively,” he said of Permian. “We want to make sure we’re going out, we’re aggressive, physical and match that intensity.
“Permian is a very good team and we have to do our best. “
>> CLIMB THE CHARTES: With running back Javonte Delce’s solid effort against the Bobcats, Bronchos quarterback Diego Cervantes wasn’t as busy last week, only having to throw the ball 24 times.
He completed 15, for 152 yards, which took him from seventh to fourth in career passing yards with 2,668. He passed Trey Smith (2,522), Nick Adams (2,583 ) and Carl Schlemeyer (2,666) in the victory.
Wide receiver Ivan Carreon also climbed the record books with five receptions for 44 yards. He now has 49 receptions to break the 48 in a single season set by Gabriel Rodriguez in 2009.
It also tied him for sixth on the career receptions list with Miles Torres (2007-08).
Carreon has 706 receiving yards this season, which is second in the state among Class 6A receivers and eighth in the state among all receivers.
>> IMPLICATIONS FOR THE Playoffs: It’s not just a rivalry match for Odessa High (3-3 overall, 1-1 District 2-6A) and Permian (4-2, 1-1).
Both teams are coming off their first district wins in the second and need to keep the momentum going this week in order to stand a better chance in the playoffs.
Odessa High is yet to play Midland Legacy, Abilene High and Wolfforth Frenship after her date with the Panthers.
The Permian left Midland Legacy, Midland High, and San Angelo Central on their schedule.
After Friday’s results when Midland Legacy returned to defeat Abilene High, many believe the Rebels will fight for the district crown. That leaves three places wide open and a second loss makes it more difficult for the Bronchos or the Panthers.
>> Follow Lee Scheide on Twitter at @OALeeScheide
PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Height: 5 feet-9
Last week: Carried the ball 11 times for 138 yards and two touchdowns, as well as catching two passes for 15 yards and one touchdown, in a 41-14 win Friday over San Angelo Central.
This season: At 76 carries for 471 yards and five touchdowns, with 11 receptions for 150 yards and three scores