THREE RIVERS — The Ben Bolt-Palito Blanco Badgers are probably the best-kept secret in South Texas’ small school football.

By beating the Three Rivers Bulldogs Friday night, the Badgers completed a perfect 5-0 run to win the District 16-2A, Div. I championship. It’s the program’s first district title in six years.

The Badgers beat the Bulldogs, 34-6, behind solid offensive play by quarterback Adrian Estrada and running back Brandon Adams.

Estrada wasted little time putting the Badgers on top Friday night, completing a 60-yard touchdown pass to receiver Frankie Rodriguez on the first play from scrimmage.

“Adrian Estrada played lights-out tonight,” said Johnson, now in his second year at Ben Bolt-Palito Blanco High School. “He’s taken control of our offense. He listens and he’s very coachable and he fits in to what we’re trying to do. And well, Brandon Adams is just Brandon Adams.”

Adams kept Three Rivers’ defense on its heels most of the night with some strong running. Adams even three a touchdown pass in a trick play.

Aside from Rodriguez, the Badgers also had solid receiver play from Nick Garcia and Nicholas Garcia.

Defensively, the Badgers were led by Ariel Garza, who moved from the defensive line to linebacker.

With the win, the Badgers improved to 5-0 in district and 7-3 for the season. More impressively, their three losses came against three Class 3A opponents. The three loses were by a combined five points.

“It was tough getting here,” Johnson said. “You know, over the last two seasons, I’ve seen these kids develop with character and matured right before my eyes. When I got here, the kids had to buy into the program. They had played for a coach that had been here a long time and they trusted him. Here I was, this new new… they bought into my system and it’s been beautiful.”

After a bye next week, Ben Bolt-Palito Blanco is facing Weimer in the first round of the Class 2A playoffs.