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By Steven Howard          Sep 11, 2022

EL PASO, TEXAS -- Going into this past Friday nights game, the jury was out on whether or not Pebble Hills High School's football team was ready to take the next step in becoming one of the top teams in the Borderland.  And did they prove a lot of doubters wrong.

Facing one of the Borderland's preannial powers in Eastwood High School (1 - 2), Sparta -- as Pebble Hills has affectionately been nick named -- put on a show.  With a final score of 40 - 22, the Spartans left no doubt that this years team is for real and is ready to make a deep playoff run.

On the offensive side of the ball, the Spartans are led by Junior QB Gael Ochoa (504 Passing yards, 65.5% complettion rate; 7 TD's & 1 Int) and a trio of WR's -- Senior Jalile Bost (187 yards, 4TDs), Junior Marcus Torres (142 yards, 1 TD), and Junior Brandon Cardenas (123 yards, 1 TD).  This group has been instrumental in the Pebble HIlls offense averaging almost 38 points per game (37.67 ppg).

On the defensive side of the ball, Sparta is led by Seniors Omar Salas (32 tackles), Kole Pellerito (27 tackles), Dallas Salazar (18 tackles), and Sophomore Dorian Jaramillo (21 tackles).  Led by this group, the Pebble Hills defense has been stought and has held down opponents to less than 12 points per game (11.67 ppg).

The combination of experience (no less than 9 returners on both sides of the ball) and being healthy has been a recipe for disator for opponents.  With district play now in full swing, the Spartans have an opportunity to be a very special team and make a deep playoff run.

With only one of their next five opponents having a winning record, the schedule is set up for a final 2 weeks of the season that should be very exciting.  

     - El Dorado (2 - 1, 0 - 1)

     - Coronado (1 - 2, 0 - 1)

     - Americas (1 - 2, 1 - 0)

     - Socorro (0 - 2, 0 - 0)

     - Montwood (0 - 3, 0 - 1)  

With some good health and consistent play each week, Pebble Hills has an opportunity to go into their final 2 matchups undefeated.  With games against the very potent Franklin (2 - 1, 1 - 0) and dangerous Eastlake (2 - 1, 1 - 0) the final 2 weeks, the Spartans will be in a "put up and shout up" situation on their claim as the best team in the Borderland.  If the season plays out as we expect, these final two games will decide the District Title and give the Spartans a really good picture of where they stand and their potential for making a playoff push.  

Our prediction is that once the dust settles, this years version of the Spartans will walk away with the District title and be poised to make a run in the playoffs.