Zach Duncan
Wichita Falls Times Record News
Published June 14, 2018

Fernando Piedra can’t decide which sport he likes better – football or baseball.

It’s fitting because the recent Jacksboro High School graduate is pulling double duty this weekend. After appearing in Friday’s FCA all-star baseball game, he’ll play for the East squad in Saturday’s Oil Bowl.

It’s a setup that’s possible because there was only one baseball practice before the FCA’s festivities Friday night in Iowa Park. And because one of his Oil Bowl football coaches is Brannon Rodgers, who led the Tigers during Piedra’s senior year.

“It’s going to be fun to be around them one more time,” said Rodgers, who is also coaching his former quarterback Payton Laake this week. “We’re going to juggle (Fernando) this week. He knows what we’re going to do defensively and of course kicking. He’ll be fine football-wise and he’ll have fun playing baseball.”

Piedra made 41 tackles and picked off two passes as a starting cornerback for a Jacksboro squad that surprised many by winning 11 games and advancing to the 3A Division II regional round. He also was an all-district kicker, making five field goals and 53 PATs.

Piedra then made an immediate impact on a Tiger baseball team that went three rounds deep. A first-team 8-3A selection at third base, Piedra batted .379 as the team’s leadoff hitter, reaching base in more than half his plate appearances. He also showed versatility by playing at shortstop, second base and in the outfield.