By JOSEPH NAGY
The Trojans held on to a 13-8 lead, defeating the Vaqueros in an intense match that kept the crowd on the edge of their seats the whole way. With this win, the Trojans have clinched third place in PCL and a possible wild card spot in CIF playoffs.
There was tension throughout the game as the score had never surpassed a margin of eight points.The fourth quarter was tight but the Trojan defense persevered, allowing Irvine to score only one touchdown. With constant pressure on the quarterback, the Vaqueros offense was shut down and the Trojans maintained possession of the ball for more than half of the game. Recovering a fumble and an interception, UHS was able to rally around the defense and pull off a much needed victory.
The Vaqueros scored first in the second quarter on a QB sneak. They would go for a 2 point conversion and make it on a run to the right side. The Irvine touchdown would put the Vaqueros up 8-0.
On a pass from quarterback Thomas Keeling (So.) to wide receiver Farbod Memarian (Jr.) just minutes later, the Trojans would have a touchdown of their own. After an extra point from kicker Nick Loveland (Sr.), the score became 8-7. This catch was the only touchdown for the Trojans.
“It was a great call, and I was happy to be put in that situation,” Memarian said after the play.
The score remained the same until there were four minutes left in the third quarter. Loveland then proceeded to make a 20 yard field goal, breaking Irvine’s lead. This kick put the Trojans up 10-8.
Early in the fourth quarter, safety Josiah Henry (Jr.) intercepted a Vaquero pass near the Trojan endzone. Later in the drive, Loveland made another field goal that would increase the lead to 13-8.
The score remained the same throughout the rest of the game where the Trojans were able to pull out the W. One noted key player was star running back Sam Winder (Sr.), who rushed for 175 yards.
“The 175 yards mean nothing, the yards go to the offensive line and all I care about is that we got the W,” Winder said after asked about his achievement.
Another excited player about the win was defensive end Onyexx Chukwumerije (Jr.). “It felt good to get them back after the name calling that went on before the game,” Chukwumerije said.
As of now, Beckman will finish second in league and CDM first. If the Trojans are to advance to CIF playoffs with a 8-2 record, a win against Woodbridge is necessary. Next Friday, UHS football looks to burn the bridge for the first time in five seasons, in hopes of continuing on to CIF for the second consecutive year.