Mexico: Reyes de Jalisco clinch 5th seed in tight win over Gallos Negros de Querétaro

Mexico’s Liga de Fútbol Americano Profesional had only one game on tap this past Easter weekend as the Reyes de Jalisco used a strong second half to break open a tie game and defeat the Gallos Negros de Querétaro 19-12.

With the win, the Reyes clinched the fifth seed heading into the playoffs and dropped de Querétaro to the number six seed.

Both offenses struggled in the first quarter with the Gallos Negros never making it in the red zone for the entire quarter. Quarterback Marco García was under constant pressure from a fired-up Reyes defensive front seven. The Reyes on the other hand came close but kicker Gabriel Amavizca missed two field goals.

Jalisco found the scoreboard first in the second quarter as quarterback Jon Mullin threw a touchdown pass to wide receiver Rodnell Cruel. However, Amavizca continued his struggles with a missed extra point. The Gallos Negros returned the favor at the end of the half with a one yard run by Emilio Chávez but that was all the scoring, and the two teams were tied at 6-6 going into the break.

Gallos Negros WR Carlos Olvera #8 shut down by Reyes defense Photo LFA

The third quarter for the Reyes was highlighted by running back Majid Esperaza who found a seam and broke four tackles in racing 60 yards for a touchdown to give Jalisco a 13-6 lead.

 The Reyes controlled the ball for much of the third quarter thanks to the work of their stalwart defense, but they still came up empty. In quarter four, Emilio Chávez scored his second touchdown for the Gallos Negros, but the Reyes blocked the extra point attempt again to hold onto the lead, 13-12.

In the final minute, Marco García broke through for a first down looking to spark a comeback for his team, but on the very next play he threw a back breaking interception with Reyes defensive back David Richardson picking him off. This gave the ball back to the Reyes, who in the final seconds closed out the game with another 60+ yard touchdown run by Majid Esperaza.

The victory locked the Reyes up as the number five seed in the playoffs. For the Gallos Negros, this was their fourth straight loss and knocked them down a seed spot.  

A recent graduate of Hofstra University in New York. He is currently a sports freelance journalist and podcaster