With his offense struggling early in the second half Friday night, Foothill High coach Martin Redmond decided it was time to gamble with his special teams.
Redmond called a fake field goal that resulted in a touchdown pass from holder Andre Gonzalez to Tate Warr, and the fifth-ranked Falcons gained just enough momentum to escape with a 28-24 road victory over Desert Oasis.
Drew Doxtator, who completed 19 of 27 passes for 209 yards, came to life in the second half to help Foothill (3-0) rally in the fourth quarter.
“When it came down to it, we stepped up our tempo,” said Redmond, whose team trailed 24-21 after the Diamondbacks (0-2) scored on a 35-yard run by Devin Fortenberry. “And that’s what we needed to do.”
Both offenses were held to less than 100 yards in the first half, but the Falcons managed to take a 7-0 lead when Jarrett Arcangel capped a 55-yard drive with a 2-yard plunge with 7:42 remaining in the half.
Mark Fredericks scored on a 9-yard touchdown run for Desert Oasis early in the second half, but the Diamondbacks failed to convert the point-after.
“Special teams was huge tonight,” said Redmond, whose team did not permit any Desert Oasis conversions in four attempts.
When Foothill’s next drive fizzled at the Diamondbacks’ 15-yard line, the Falcons set up for a field goal.
“We worked on that play all week,” said Gonzalez, who took the snap, sprung to his feet and rolled left to find Warr streaking toward the end zone. “I’m left-handed, so I just threw it to Tate.”
Redmond said the play was run to perfection.
“Our kid made a great catch,” he said. “They executed that play really well.”
The Falcons would need those points, as a 31-yard touchdown sprint by Trevon Barnes and a 37-yard scoring run by Fortenberry gave the Diamondbacks an 18-14 lead late in the third quarter.
Doxtator helped Foothill regain the lead at 21-18 with a 4-yard keeper early in the fourth, but Fortenberry’s touchdown minutes later put Desert Oasis back in control.
The Falcons again took advantage of good field position and went ahead for good when Doxtator hit Kyle Keplinger with a 17-yard pass that made it 28-24 with 2:29 remaining.
The Diamondbacks rallied one more time, but their final drive ended when Herman Smith was sacked on a fourth-down play with 19 seconds left.
Keplinger caught four passes for 69 yards, and teammate Tyren Boykin logged 60 yards on five receptions.
Fortenberry led Desert Oasis, rushing for 158 yards on 13 carries, with all but 30 yards coming in the second half.
Pahrump Valley 13, Western 7 — At Western, the Trojans (1-1, 1-1 Southwest) ended a 29-game losing streak and gained their first Class 4A victory, beating the Warriors (0-2, 0-2).
Quarterback Alexander Segura rushed for two touchdowns in the fourth quarter and passed for 96 yards to fuel Pahrump Valley.
Pahrump Valley hadn’t won since Aug. 30, 2008.
“It feels great. I mean what can you say. It is great to have a win,” coach Andy Schneider said.
The Trojans made a key play in the fourth quarter, stopping running back Reggie Williams on fourth-and-2 at their 19-yard line.
Jonathon Mitchell rushed for 70 yards on 20 carries and Hunter Mills gained 65 yards on four receptions.
Williams led Western with 68 yards on 20 carries and a touchdown.
— Adam Eslinger
Bonanza 31, Sierra Vista 27 — At Bonanza, the Bengals (3-0, 2-0 Southwest) scored three times on drives that began in Sierra Vista territory and twice came from behind to defeat the Mountain Lions (0-2, 0-1).
Sierra Vista rode Justin Green’s 180 rushing yards and two touchdowns, including an 82-yarder, to leads in the first and fourth quarters, but couldn’t hold on.
Trailing 27-24 with 8:10 to play, Bonanza took over at the Mountain Lions’ 40-yard line after a 7-yard muffed punt. After a 9-yard loss, the Bengals got rushes of 14, 14, 7 and 9 yards before Jayveon Taylor scored on a 6-yard run.
Taylor had 79 yards on 14 carries, and Rico Soto gained 89 yards on 13 carries. Brett Doyle passed for 148 yards and a touchdown and Austin Rowe had a 24-yard field goal.
For Sierra Vista, Taz Wilson passed for 145 yards, but Bonanza’s Jacob picked off two passes, one that ended the Mountain Lions’ final drive.
— Neil Grepke
Bishop Gorman 49, Durango 0 — At Durango, Shaquille Powell rushed for 143 yards and three touchdowns on seven carries to spark the No. 1 Gaels (3-1, 2-0 Southwest) over the Trailblazers (1-2, 1-1).
Powell scored on runs of 40, 45 and 3 yards, and didn’t have a carry in the second half. Gorman led 42-0 at halftime and a running clock was used after a 5-yard TD run by Justin Sweet with 7:02 to play in the third quarter.
The Gaels compiled 581 yards and its defense allowed 64, led by Isaiah Nacua, Ben Guida and Marquis Hunkin.
Ryan Smith compiled 133 yards on five catches, including first-half touchdowns of 39 and 50 yards.
Jarrett Solomon passed for three touchdowns and 224 yards on 14 completions, including a 9-yard TD hook-up to Jamir Tillman.
Marques Herrera led Durango with 91 yards on offense and returns.
— Brennan Karle
Legacy 56, Faith Lutheran 6 — At Legacy, the Longhorns (1-1, 1-1 Northwest) scored touchdowns on their first seven possessions and gained 439 yards on the ground in defeating the Crusaders (1-1, 1-1).
Faith Lutheran’s Gino DeGeorge opened the scoring on a 1-yard run, then Legacy took control behind running back D’Andre Hughes, who rushed for 266 yards and three touchdowns on 20 carries. He scored on runs of 5, 29 and 23 yards.
Jordan Ireland had scoring runs of 50 and 3 yards among his 84 yards, and Quincey Lindsey added 78 yards on nine carries, with two touchdowns.
— Adam Berchin
Palo Verde 48, Mojave 0 — At Mojave, the second-ranked Panthers (3-0, 2-0 Northwest) showed they are more than just a running team, as sophomore quarterback Parker Rost passed for 106 yards and three touchdowns in a victory over the Rattlers (0-2, 0-2).
Jonathan Maxwell made TD catches of 16 yards to open the scoring and 31 to makeit 34-0 in the third quarter. Rost also connected with sophomore Jake Ortale for an 11-yard score.
Palo Verde junior Lee Griggs scored on runs of 3 and 3 yards. Eric South led the Panthers with 110 yards rushing, and Jerrol Garcia-Williams returned an interception 21 yards for a touchdown.
— Alan Abair
Coronado 42, Chaparral 14 — At Chaparral, the Cougars (2-0) racked up 446 total yards in their victory over the Cowboys (0-2).
Christopher Johnson rushed for 155 yards, including a 43-yard touchdown. Nate Webb broke a 68-yard TD run, and running back Evan Cooper (2 yards) and quarterback Kevin Lucero (15) added rushing scores.
Lucero completed a 3-yard TD pass to Cody Mucino and backup Derrick Keller connected with Tyler Proctor for a 5-yard TD.
— Nolan Lister
Silverado 21, Valley 12 — At Silverado, Izaiah Thurmon rushed for 130 yards on 19 carries, including a 10-yard TD in the first half that put the Skyhawks (1-1) ahead of the Vikings (0-2) for good.
Deandre Gause scored on a 5-yard run in the third quarter to give Silverado a 21-6 lead, capping a drive that began on a fumble handoff by Valley, recovered by Gary Nixon.
Valley answered with a time-consuming 13-play, 76-yard drive, finished by Anthony Sanders’ 11-yard pass to Erik Edmonds on fourth-and-goal.
But Silverado’s defense held, led by senior defensive end Coty Iwata, who had three sacks.
Kennedy Williams rushed for a 66-yard touchdown in the first half for Valley.
— Tim Guesman
Del Sol 40, Eldorado 6 — At Del Sol, the sixth-ranked Dragons (2-0) overcame a sloppy start and 16 penalties to defeat the Sundevils (1-1) with stalwart defense and a stellar return game.
Chris Marshall rushed for 106 yards and a touchdown, plus a 73-yard punt return for a score to spark Del Sol in the second half. Tremar Pike returned a kickoff 93 yards for a TD and Dwayne Kirkland added a 33-yard interception return for a score.
Del Sol’s Nathan Kirschbaum passed for 164 yards and a touchdown, and lineman Ben Littlefield anchored a steady defensive line that kept the Sundevils’ offense off-balance.
Javen Nihipali scored for Eldorado on a 50-yard pass from Cameron Howard.
— Angela Denker
Moapa Valley 47, Sunrise Mountain 0 — At Sunrise Mountain, Connor Mortensen rushed for 162 yards and two touchdowns on 17 carries, and the Pirates (3-1) compiled 310 yards on the ground to defeat the Miners (0-2).
Sean McConnell supplied 115 yards and a touchdown. Dakota Watters threw second-quarter TD passes of 19 yards to Brandon Johnson and 25 Shane Terril, who made four grabs for 43 yards.
Moapa Valley had three sacks and Austin Prisbey forced an interception in the third quarter.
— Zac Alexander
Virgin Valley 20, Shadow Ridge 16 — At Mesquite, Humberto Urias threw a 14-yard touchdown pass to Kyle Tostenson with 4:36 remaining, lifting the Class 3A Bulldogs (3-0) over the Mustangs (0-2).
Tostenson’s go-ahead catch capped a 12-play, 80-yard drive after Shadow Ridge had gone ahead 16-14 on a snap out of the end zone for a safety in the fourth quarter.
Tostenson also caught a 5-yard TD pass from Urias, who threw for 73 yards.
Junior Toscano returned a third-quarter kickoff 95 yards for a TD for Virgin Valley, which is 3-0 against 4A opponents.
Shadow Ridge quarterback J Henderson rushed for 70 yards on 23 attempts and threw a 16-yard TD strike to James Grigsby. Chris Edwards rushed for 67 yards and a touchdown on 13 carries.
Green Valley 35, Boulder City 16 — At Boulder City, Aaron Love scored rushing touchdowns of 13, 1 and 5 yards to carry the Class 4A Gators (1-1) past the 3A Eagles (1-2).
Green Valley’s Jacob Olim found Sean Ferraro for a 61-yard TD pass in the second quarter, and Quintin Kohorst added an 8-yard TD run in the fourth.
Xavier Steel rushed for 57 yards on eight attempts for Boulder City, including a 45-yard TD in the third quarter.
Spring Mountain 62, Mineral County 0 — At Spring Mountain, junior Meiyako Williams returned three punts for touchdowns, rushed for three scores and passed for one as the Eagles (2-0) blanked the Serpents (0-2) for their second shutout.
Williams, a quarterback/defensive back, returned punts 36, 65 and 56 yards for scores. His rushing TDs were for 33, 26 and 6 yards, and he hooked up with Leroy Freeman on a 64-yard scoring strike.
Williams passed for 73 yards and rushed for 73 on eight carries. Price Powell rushed for 71 yards on six carries, with a 5-yard TD.
Freeman also scored on an 11-yard return of a blocked punt for Spring Mountain. Mineral County fumbled six times, losing four.
— Tristan Aird
Pahranagat Valley 72, Carlin 0 — At Alamo, Austin Poulsen rushed for 87 yards and four touchdowns on five carries and completed 12 of 17 passes for 154 yards and three TDs as the Panthers (3-0) blasted the Railroaders (2-1).
The Panthers built a 44-0 first-quarter lead on the way to their 37th straight victory.
Tyler Higbee ran for 60 yards and one score on eight attempts for Pahranagat, and also caught three passes for 42 yards and a score.
Kade Wadsworth had five receptions for 89 yards and two TDs for the Panthers.
Francis Parker (Calif.) 43, Mountain View 19 — At San Diego, the Saints (1-2) fell behind 16-0 in the first quarter and were unable to erase the deficit.
Mountain View quarterback Travis Wallace passed for 236 yards and two touchdowns, and rushed for 24 yards and one TD. He hooked up with Matthew Larson on a 93-yard scoring strike and Trevor Van Kempen on a 19-yard TD.
Larson ran for 87 yards on six attempts and caught four passes for 159 yards for Mountain View.
Abundant Life (Utah) 42, Sandy Valley 13 — At Sandy Valley, Randal Spencer scored on a kickoff return and a short run for the Sidewinders (0-1).
Laughlin 32, Lake Havasu (Ariz.) JV 12 — At Laughlin, Colton Hill and Corey Beggs ran for two touchdowns apiece for the Cougars (2-0).