The score might not show it, but Robstown coach Enrique Gonzalez said the Cotton Pickers took a positive step on offense in last week’s 47-20 loss to Aransas Pass. That’s because a disastrous start resulted in an avalanche of points from which Robstown wasn’t able to recover.

“We finished with 370 total yards. We just need to eliminate the mistakes,” said Gonzalez, whose 0-2 Cotton Pickers host 2-0 Banquete on Friday. “That’s been the theme this season. We have to eliminate the mistakes that put us in a hole.”

The hole got really deep real fast against the Panthers. Robstown fumbled the opening kickoff, which led to a two-play, 9-yard scoring drive by Aransas Pass. Three turnovers on the next three possessions allowed the Panthers to build a 28-0 lead after one quarter. The advantage increased to 34 points early in the second quarter before the Cotton Pickers finally answered with a 25-yard scoring pass from Riley Ramos to Jason Mungia.

By the time the avalanche stopped, there was no way for Robstown to recover.

“After just 15 plays they had five touchdowns and 173 total yards, but it was all us. We shot ourselves in the foot,” Gonzalez said. “If we eliminate those kinds of mistakes we'll be fine.”

Quarterback Riley Ramos likely has earned the starting job all to himself after passing for 235 yards and two touchdowns and rushing for 100 against Aransas Pass. Ramos shared snaps with two other players before last week’s breakout.

“I think Riley really stepped forward last week,” Gonzalez said. “He finally looked comfortable, so I think we’re going to stay with him. We had previously used a couple other guys, but it was an easy decision when Riley took over the way he did.”

Although the Cotton Pickers struggled against the Panthers, Gonzalez remains optimistic after two games.

“I think we had a good opener against Miller, but our defense stayed out there way too long,” Gonzalez said. “Last week we struggled with the Slot-T. (Aransas Pass coach Gary) Davenport and his staff did a heck of a job adjusting to our defense. It was a rough one for us, but a positive is that we’re healthy. At this point last year we had lost five or six starters.”