The past two meetings between the Foothill and Silverado football teams were tense affairs that weren’t decided until the final minutes.
Justice Jackson and the Falcons made sure Friday’s battle for the Victory Bell was decided quite a bit earlier.
Jackson rumbled for 228 yards and four touchdowns on 36 carries, and host Foothill took advantage of several miscues by the Skyhawks in a 45-22 victory.
“This is a good win for us,” Foothill coach Marty Redmond said. “It’s still early, a lot of mistakes, but it’s good to get that first win.”
Devin Smith had two interceptions, the second of which he returned 28 yards for a touchdown late in the second quarter to help give the Falcons (1-1) a 28-7 lead at halftime.
“A pick-six is always a huge momentum swing,” Redmond said. “I felt really good about scoring right before the half. That was a huge momentum thing.”
Jackson added two second-half touchdown runs and put away Silverado (1-1) with a 51-yard score with 2:04 remaining in the fourth quarter.
“With the wind in our face, we’ve got to give him the ball,” Redmond said. “He’s going to be our horse for us.”
The Skyhawks jumped out to a 7-0 lead midway through the first quarter as quarterback Micah Weber scrambled 29 yards on fourth-and-9. But Silverado committed three first-half turnovers that the Falcons turned into 14 points and also were stopped twice on fourth down.
The first time Silverado failed to convert on fourth down proved costly as a bad snap forced Skyhawks punter Garrett Chanice to unload a desperation pass that fell incomplete.
Foothill took over at the Skyhawks’ 16-yard line and tied the game three plays later as quarterback Devon Mueller found Jonas Burrell for a 7-yard touchdown with 2:10 left in the first quarter.
Jackson added touchdown runs of 17 and 65 yards before halftime as the Falcons scored 38 consecutive points and led 38-7 entering the fourth quarter.
Silverado’s offense went three-and-out on four straight possessions to open the second half before scoring twice in the fourth quarter.
“We’re really young on the defensive side of the ball,” Redmond said. “We’re learning and we’ve still got a lot to learn, but I was pretty happy with our effort.”
Weber connected with wide receiver Evan Tafoya for a 20-yard touchdown to cut Foothill’s lead to 38-14 and hit Devion Clayton for a 23-yard score with 2:53 remaining. ZaKee Washington hauled in the two-point conversion pass to make the score 38-22.
Weber finished with a team-high 83 yards rushing for Silverado and was 18-for-40 passing for 184 yards and two TDs.
Contact reporter David Schoen at email@example.com or 702-387-5203. Follow him on Twitter: @DavidSchoenLVRJ.