Former Yoe star runner now local restaurant owner
OYE Bertie Shuemate, Columnist
Rode over to Rockdale last Friday with Josh Pratt to watch Coach Burns and his Yoemen cruise by the Tigers to clinch a playoff spot. Of course the night would not be complete without him finding a good place to eat. All he could talk about all night was to try a newly opened Mexican food place called Gonzales Mexican Bar and Grill. A co-worker of his told him it was good. It was easy to find, heading out Highway 79 west toward Thorndale about a quartermile before Wal-Mart on the right. After ordering I began to notice the owner and he looked familiar, so I asked a waitress his first name. When she told me it was Martin I got very excited and he had noticed me about the same time. He came over and we began talking old times at Yoe High, especially 1995-96. Martin Gonzales was a star running back for Todd Dodge’s Yoemen in 1995, which was a 5-5 season. His first season 1994 was a 3-7 year, making his two-year record 8 wins and 12 losses. He left Cameron in 1995 for the Metroplex, where he would become famous a couple years later at Southlake Carroll with multiple state championships. But back to Martin, who still had his senior year at Yoe High to go. Taking over for Dodge was Randy Sapp, who would lead the Yoemen for the next seven years and they were great years. The year 1996 was possibly his best and Martin Gonzales was a big part of that team. They went 12-2, losing only to district foe Manor in overtime 27-24. They won non-district games over Lampasas 22-16, Groesbeck 14-0 and La Grange 25-12. In district they beat Caldwell 42-14, before losing that overtime thriller to Manor. They swept the rest of the district beating Giddings 10-7, Hearne 54-7, Elgin 20-7, Smithville 45-15, and Rockdale 17-0. In the playoffs, they took down Robinson 33-7 in Killeen, Mexia 38-6 at Bryan High, and Columbus 14-3 in Regionals at Bryan also. This was a memorable victory known as the Fog Bowl. It was also Mr. Gonzales’ greatest game in a Yoe uniform. The Yoemen upset the Cardinals 14-3 behind Martin’s two touchdowns and two extra points. Quarterback Kal Kelley was injured late in the game and the Yoemen fell to Coldspring 37-19 the next week at A&M’s Kyle Field in the State Quarterfinals. So we would recommend you try Martin’s restaurant, especially the fajitas. They were great and priced very reasonable. Be sure to say hello to Martin and his wife while you are there and tell him Bertie recommended his establishment. Go Yoe and all Ex-Yoemen.