MELISSA — An influx of young talent helped the Cardinals rise in the standings.

Freshmen Kaedric Cobbs and Ja’Bray Young proved an immediate jump to the varsity wasn’t too big a responsibility.

Cobbs finished with 140 carries for 1,091 yards and 15 touchdowns and had 55 tackles, two pass breakups, an interception and a forced fumble.

Young totaled 62 tackles (40 solo), seven for a loss, three sacks, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery and had 77 carries for 761 yards and seven touchdowns.

Melissa went from 1-9 to 8-4 and an area round appearance.

Cobbs was the District 5-4A (II) Offensive Newcomer of the Year while Young shared the district’s Defensive Newcomer of the Year honor.

Now the duo shares the honor as the Herald Democrat All-Texomaland Class 4A-5A Newcomers of the Year for the 2016 season.