Foothill junior Jordan Wilson wasn’t completely satisfied with his team’s defensive performance at Chaparral on Friday night.
“We allowed a touchdown, that’s unacceptable to us,” Wilson said.
That’s about the only thing the Falcons’ defense did wrong though. Despite allowing Cowboys playmaker TyRay Collins to make a few ankle-breaking cuts on a broken play for a 39-yard score in the third quarter, Foothill’s defense controlled the game.
The Falcons recorded two interceptions, both by Wilson, and five sacks in a 34-7 road victory that improved the team to 3-0 for the first time since 2011.
“We’re really starting to get our kids to get to the ball and understand where we want them, position-wise,” Foothill coach Martin Redmond said. “Once we get lined up right, we usually play pretty well.”
The Falcons defense barely moved at all in the first half, allowing only 65 total yards as its offense raced out to a 21-0 lead. Twice in the first half Foothill stopped Chaparral (3-1) on third down and set its offense up with short fields when high snaps prevented the Cowboys from punting.
The Falcons scored touchdowns after both failed punts, and added another first-half score when quarterback Koy Riggin threw a 24-yard TD pass to Dylan Mueller, who left his feet completely to dive for the ball in the end zone.
“Awesome, wasn’t it?” Redmond said. “He threw the ball in a perfect spot.”
When the second half rolled around the defense started making plays of its own, starting when Wilson grabbed an interception on Chaparral’s first play and returning 25 yards it for a touchdown. Wilson credited safety Jordan Blakely, who was covering the passes’ intended receiver, with an assist on the play for tipping the ball right to him.
“My boy Jordan Blakely, he knocked the ball out of the receiver’s hands,” Wilson said.
Wilson ended the Cowboys’ next drive with an interception too, only this time a potential second touchdown was called off due to a penalty. The junior still got another chance to find the end zone however, answering Collins’ TD run with a 6-yard score of his own late in the third quarter to make the score final.
The Falcons ultimately outgained Chaparral 349-144 in the game thanks to a strong night from Riggin, who passed for 185 yards and two touchdowns on 19 attempts and ran for 53 more. Foothill’s defense also held an opponent to seven points or fewer for the second time in three games, and the team is now giving up an average of only 10.3 points per game heading into its last nonleague contest against Eldorado.
“We’re still … learning who can play where,” Redmond said. “We’re still a little bit young, we’re still improving.”
Cimarron-Memorial 31, Centennial 28 — At Centennial, the Spartans scored with 31 seconds remaining to overcome a three-point deficit and stun Centennial.
Facing fourth-and-2 at the Centennial 22-yard line, Cimarron quarterback George Tribble hit fullback Alonzo Pollard for a 17-yard gain to the Bulldogs 5-yard line, and two plays later, connected with tight end Cameron Dickson-Anderson for the winning touchdown. Both plays were the only catches for both players.
Centennial had a late opportunity to win, but the Bulldogs’ final pass was intercepted at the goal line.
After Centennial led 14-7 at halftime, Cimarron (3-0, 1-0 Northwest League) scored 18 unanswered points, with Jordan Norwood scoring on runs of 27 and 18 yards in the third quarter. He finished with 116 yards on the game. Tribble hit Marcus Phillips on a 3-yard scoring pass at the start of the fourth quarter to put the Spartans up 25-14.
Centennial (0-3, 0-1) then mounted its own comeback. Nico Antuna scored from 1 yard out on the ensuing drive, and after forcing a punt, Isiaha Conner scored on an 88-yard catch-and-run, his second touchdown of the game, to put Centennial back on top with 4:23 left in the game.
Vlad Plotnikov finished with 270 yards passing with two scores for Centennial, and Tribble was 7-for-10 with two scores of his own for Cimarron.
Cheyenne 45, Valley 30 — At Valley, Anthony Walker made three interceptions, part of eight turnovers for the Desert Shields, as they took down the Vikings.
Rayvion Brown, Charleston Tooks, Javier Cone and Wesley Federson all had interceptions for the Desert Shields (1-2), for a total of seven interceptions on the night. None went for touchdowns.
Cheyenne’s James Henry opened the scoring with 2:50 left in the first quarter on a 30-yard catch from Joshua Rose. Valley’s Bryce Jones returned the ensuing kickoff 86 yards to tie the score, only to see Henry score two plays later on a 55-yard run. Cheyenne burst out to a 33-12 halftime lead and was never threatened in the second half.
Cheyenne running back Clarence Rose was a bulldozer, plowing through defenders regularly on his way to 211 rushing yards and two scores on just 15 carries. Quarterback Joshua Rose was highly efficient, finishing 11-for-12 with three passing touchdowns and rushed for 48 yards on 10 carries.
Bryce Jones finished with 114 yards and a score on 15 carries to lead the Vikings (0-2). Jones also had a receiving touchdown to go with his kickoff return for a score.
Virgin Valley 52, Western 7 — At Western, senior running back Jayden Perkins rushed for 146 yards and two touchdowns on 10 carries, had a 49-yard TD reception, and provided an interception to power the Bulldogs past the Warriors.
Virgin Valley quarterback Cade Anderson threw for 142 yards and two scores, and the Bulldogs’ defense held Western to 157 yards of total offense with three interceptions.
Anderson hit a wide-open Perkins over the middle on Virgin Valley’s opening drive for a 49-yard score, and Perkins added a 34-yard TD scamper up the middle on the next series for an early 13-0 lead.
Logan Felix jumped a corner route and returned the interception for a touchdown, and Perkins supplied a 20-yard touchdown run to give the Bulldogs (2-2) a 27-0 lead early in the second quarter.
Felix hauled in a 37-yard TD catch from Anderson, who added a 25-yard scoring run to make it 40-7 with 9:00 left in the third quarter.
Western wide receiver Aaron Morales took a screen pass from quarterback Joseph Medley 80 yards down the left sideline in the second quarter for the Warriors’ lone score. Eric Hughes had a fumble recovery, and teammate J’Veon Jackson had two sacks for Western (1-2).
Pahrump Valley 30, Boulder City 14 — At Pahrump, Dylan Coffman rushed for 67 yards and two touchdowns on 11 carries to lead Trojans to a victory over the Eagles.
DeAngelo Brown added 131 yards on 17 carries for Pahrump Valley (1-2), which led 14-8 at halftime.
Nico Velazquez had 67 rushing yards on 10 carries, and David Roundy had 84 rushing yards on four carries. Cory Bergan also returned an interception for a touchdown for the Trojans.
Boulder City fell to 2-2.
Lincoln County 36, Lake Mead 23 — At Lake Mead, Noah Smith ran for 112 yards and three touchdowns to lead the Lynx to victory over the Eagles.
After falling behind 10-0 in the first quarter and losing a pair of fumbles to aid Lake Mead’s efforts, Lincoln County buckled down in the second quarter, scoring three times to take the lead for good. Smith picked up two of the touchdowns on runs of 4 and 7 yards, and Landen Smith took a kickoff back 82 yards with 5:49 remaining in the half.
Landen Smith added 79 yards and a touchdown on the ground for the Lynx (2-2, 1-0 Class 2A Southern League). The teams each turned the ball over three times, but Lake Mead was hindered by penalties all game long.
The Eagles (1-1, 0-1 2A Southern League) got a strong all-around game from Mitch Dolinar, who accounted for 276 total yards and scored touchdowns on the ground, through the air and as a receiver. Pressed into action at quarterback, Dolinar passed for 114 yards and ran for 106.
Jared Regan had 58 yards on the ground for the Eagles, and Marcus Gonzales chipped in with 58 receiving yards.
Mason Thornock had 83 yards passing for Lincoln County.
Democracy Prep 54, Calvary Chapel 6 — At Rancho, the Blue Knights scored touchdowns on four of their first five possessions on the way to a rout of the Lions.
Democracy Prep’s offense struck quickly, scoring touchdowns on its first two offensive plays to take a 16-0 lead. The first score came on a 28-yard pass from quarterback Micah Gayman to receiver Kelley Jones after a short Calvary Chapel punt. Vanell Meeks scored the second touchdown on a 36-yard run.
The Blue Knights (1-1, 1-0 Class 2A Southern League) were driving downfield for a third score when Christopher Terry intercepted Gayman and returned the ball to the Democracy Prep 6-yard line. The Lions took advantage and scored two plays later on a 6-yard pass from Kade Sellers to Dylan Sims to cut the lead to 16-6.
It was the Lions’ first score since Oct. 9, 2015. They did not field a team in 2016.
Gayman threw for two more touchdowns: a 5-yard pass to Vanell Meeks, and a 20-yard pass to Amar Smith to close out the first quarter with a decisive 32-6 lead. Democracy Prep running back Kemari Cooper scored on a 35-yard run to give the Blue Knights a 40-6 halftime lead.
The Democracy Prep defense held Calvary Chapel (0-2, 0-1) to 0 yards total offense and intercepted three passes in the victory. Running back Jose Hernandez ran for a 4-yard touchdown to close out Democracy Prep’s scoring.
Needles 44, Mountain View 0 — At Mountain View, the Mustangs ran for four touchdowns and 179 yards on the ground against the Saints for their third win of the season.
Tyler White led the Mustangs with 73 rushing yards, scoring on runs of 40 and 25 yards. Tristan Pletcher also scored two rushing touchdowns, including a 15-yard run with 1:45 remaining in the first quarter.
After the Mustangs’ first touchdown of the game, Jesse Zamora intercepted a Mountain View pass and returned it 50 yards for a score on the next play from scrimmage, increasing the lead to 14.
Jayden Yeager completed 3 of 4 passes for 55 yards and a touchdown for Needles (3-0, 1-0 Class 2A Southern League). Trey Tsosie, who led the Mustangs in receiving yards with 46, caught the TD.
Tyrell Brooks completed 13 of 33 passes for 145 yards and an interception for Moutain View (0-1, 0-1). Terrence Brooks caught six passes for 71 yards.
Pahranagat Valley 62, Carlin 6 — At Alamo, Preston Higbee threw three touchdown passes to Richard Lewis as they led the Panthers past the Railroaders.
Higbee completed 8 of 10 passes for 188 yards passing and six touchdowns and also had 47 yards rushing. Lewis, whose three receptions were all touchdowns, finished with 96 yards receiving. He also led Pahranagat Valley (3-0) in tackles with seven.
Brodey Maxwell had 55 yards rushing and a touchdown, and Jesse Jones had 40 yards rushing with a touchdown. Josh Callahan had a 60-yard kickoff return for a touchdown and a 40-yard touchdown reception. Culen Highbe and Stockton Maxwell also added a touchdown reception for the Panthers, who led 48-0 at halftime.
John Hansen and Brodey Maxwell each had an interception on defense for Pahranagat Valley.
Beatty 65, Tonopah 18 — At Beatty, the Hornets defeated the Muckers in the Class 1A Southern League opener.
It was also Beatty’s season opener.
Dillan Otteson threw three touchdown passes to Kevin Pope for Tonopah (2-2, 0-1).
Indian Springs 26, Round Mountain 12 — At Round Mountain, Andrew Layton rushed for 150 yards, and Elyas Jones had two interceptions as the Thunderbirds took down the Knights.
The Thunderbirds improved to 1-2, 1-0 Class 1A Southern League.
The Knights fell to 0-3, 0-1.