Fourth Quarter Surge by Vikings Halted by Patriots

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The Holtville Vikings’ last minute comeback attempt falls seconds short against Orange Glen Friday in Holtville.
HOLTVILLE — In a mid-season non-conference high school football match up, the Holtville Vikings’ last second comeback attempt was spoiled by the gritty defense of the Orange Glen Patriots, handing the Vikings a close 39-35 loss.
The initial score of the game came late in the first quarter on a field goal from three yards
out by Holtville’s Edwin Partida (#80) to put his team up 3-0.
At the 6:00 minute mark in the second quarter on fourth and two, Holtville faked a field goal and extended the drive with a five-yard pitch to fullback Jacob Leyba (#11) that subsequently set up a three-yard touchdown gallop by running back Adam Montes (#5) to extend the lead 9-0.
In more second quarter action, the Vikings QB Anthony Castro (#7) found tight end Brice
Bolin (#3) on a 33-yard bomb to go up 15-0.
Right before the end of the second period, Orange Glen dialed up a 33-yard touchdown
connection between QB Blaine Bailey (#13) and wide receiver Malachi Russell (#17) bringing the score to 15-6 going into halftime.
Midway through the third, the Patriots’ QB Bailey hit Brandon Montes (#8) in the
numbers for a nine-yard touchdown strike to close the gap 15-13.
Orange Glen’s duo of Bailey and Russell would hook up again on a 23-yard touchdown reception to take the lead 19-15 over Holtville with 5:26 left to play in the third
quarter.
The Patriots gained more momentum, tacking on more unanswered scores in the fourth
quarter when Bailey and Russell linked up two more times on a 64-yard touchdown scorcher and a 37-yard bullet, taking a 33-15 advantage with 9:10 left
in the game.
But the Vikings showed signs of life on their next possession when running back Pasqual hauled in a 34-yard touchdown pass from QB Castro to pull within two scores at 33-21 and 8:16 remaining on the clock.
An onside kick recovery by Holtville lead to another touchdown delivery from
Castro to Pasqual from the 16-yard line to close the gap at 33-29 at the 5:44
mark.
Orange Glen answered right back when wide receiver Russell laid out to grab his fifth
touchdown reception of the night, giving the Patriots a 39-29 lead.
The unrelenting Vikings put a late drive together to score on a quarterback sneak by Castro
tightening the score to 39-35 at the two minute warning.
Holtville had one more chance with 29 seconds left in the game to muster up a comeback,
but the Patriots’ defense took the wind out of the Vikings’ sails, stopping them to claim the
victory 39-35.
“I’m proud of our guys. They played with a lot of heart, and we almost got them at the end,” said Vikings Head Coach Keith Smith. “I’m happy with where we’re at and we plan to continue to do well in league play,” he stated about the team’s performance and current first place standing in the Manzanita League.