Turnovers and penalties will always make it a challenge for any team to win a game. The Diamond Ranch Panthers (4-3 overall, 1-1 league) had three turnovers and 15 penalty flags thrown their way as they faced one of the Hacienda League’s top teams, Los Altos Conquerors (5-1 overall , 1-1 league).
In the first quarter from their own 30 yard line, Panthers quarterback Cade Miller fumbled the ball and the Conquerors Ben Aguilar recovered the ball. Aguilar ran the ball back into the end zone for the 27 yard fumble recovery. Los Altos jumped to the lead 7-0 with 5:53 left in the first quarter.
Still in the first quarter, Diamond Ranch would drive the ball to the Los Altos 13 yard line. However, the Conquerors Rene Zaldivar intercepted the pass from the Panthers quarterback Miller to stop the drive.
The Panthers would get on the board and tied the game 7-7 as running back Hunter Clark would get the handoff and run the ball in for the six yard scoring play with 1:49 remaining in the first half.
On the ensuing kickoff, the Conquerors special teams pulled out a trick play. Los Altos Zedekiah Rodriguez returned the ball running a few yards up the field and then threw a lateral pass to Zaldivar who ran the ball 82 yards to score the touchdown. The Conquerors would take the 14-7 lead going into halftime.
In the third quarter on 1st and goal from the Los Altos six yard line, Diamond Ranch would commit another fumble and the Conquerors would recover the ball. However, Los Altos was unable to capitalize on the turnover.
Los Altos made an interesting choice in the third quarter. The Panthers on 3rd and 14 from the Conquerors 48 yard line went for a pass play that was incomplete. The officials threw a penalty flag on Diamond Ranch. However, Los Altos elected to accept the penalty to replay the down.
Diamond Ranch took advantage of the second chance as Miller threw a picture perfect pass that was caught by Luis Guerrero. The junior wide receiver running the sideline route scored the touchdown on the 58 yard reception. Diamond Ranch ties the game
14-14 with 5:37 left on the game clock in the third quarter.
Los Altos had one pass intercepted that occurred late in the fourth quarter.
Diamond Ranch would capitalize on the turnover. The Panthers Miller threw a pass to Andrew Martinez who was running the slant route. The junior wide receiver took the ball into the end zone on the 23 yard pass play. The Panthers take their first lead in the game. The touchdown play gave the Panthers the 21-14 lead with 6:34 remaining in the game.
The Panthers defense kept the Conquerors offense from scoring any more points. Diamond Ranch would win the game 21-14.
Total Offense – 348 yards
Rushing – 225 yards, 22 carries
Passing – 8 for 17, 123 yards, 2 touchdowns, 1 interception
Total Offense – 66 yards
Rushing – 44 yards, 23 carries
Passing – 7 for 14, 22 yards