Cardinals to play for injured teammate
Last updated 10/31/2023 at 1pm
The Bridge City Cardinals will close out their football season on Friday. The game will be played for pride by the Cardinals and for a teammate who will not be able to make the trip to this final game of the year.
Bridge City played a physical game last week with the Silsbee Tigers. The Cardinals lost 33-7 to the state ranked Tigers.
The game was close up to about half time when the Tigers scored late in the second quarter to open their lead and swing the momentum in Silsbee's favor. Gavin Bodin of the Cardinals recovered from his run in with a play clock the week before and scored the touchdown for Bridge City.
Coach Chad Landry of the Cardinals was proud of the effort his players gave. "We matched Silsbee's physicality and it was a good ball game. Gavin was cleared with no contact through the week at practices. He performed extremely well for us Friday night. The first time he got hit we were all kind of waiting to see, and he gave the first down signal so we said okay, okay, Gavin's back this is good," Landry recalled.
The game had a disconcerting conclusion for Bridge City and their fans. Cardinal sophomore Abraham Mungia was returning a kickoff when he was hit out of bounds landing on the track injuring his head and neck.
Abraham was responsive to Bridge City trainer Bry Salazar and the coaches who were concerned for him. Landry said, "Abraham never lost consciousness and all the feelings in his legs. He could feel all the extremities, could move his hands, he could grip, he could move his feet, he could move his toes, so that was positive. He never lost consciousness and was chatting with us. He actually said, 'I'm still playing football, I'm still playing football!'"
Landry gives a lot of credit to trainer Salazar for the phenomenal job she did with Mungia. Salazar attended Abraham for close to an hour on the track to make sure he did not move his head before turning Mungia over to the EMTs.
A life flight helicopter took Mungia to Texas Children's Hospital in Houston. Landry visited with 'Mungy' as he is called by his teammates and coaches on Monday at the hospital.
Landry did not want to speculate on a prognosis for Abraham. "I saw him this morning, and I'll tell you what the kid never stopped smiling. He's extremely positive. He and his mom are just great people. The community got together and sent gift cards and stuff Mungy needed and it was great to see him still positive and smiling," Landry responded.
Also getting recognition from the coach are the sincere thoughts and well wishes from all of the local athletic directors from high schools in this area. Landry thanked, "It's been an out pouring of support. It's been great to see. Everything that I get I forward it to him. He's just a great kid in a tough spot, but he's going to continue to battle through it."
The Cardinals with a win against the Liberty Panthers would finish in fifth place one rung below making the playoffs. Win or not Bridge City has shown a marked improvement over last season when it won only one game.
Coach Landry reflected on the significance of this game. "I think we're playing for more than just pride at this moment. I think we're going to play for our teammate and prepare this week with Mungy on our mind. I feel like our guys are ready to compete and get on the field again. I just don't know how they're going react yet. I am anxious to see how we react once we kickoff. I think we'll be fine. It's just a matter of how we prepare this week and get our guys through this week," Landry concluded.
The Bridge City Cardinals and the Liberty Panthers play their final game of this season. The contest will be in Liberty starting at 7:30 on Friday night.