Agua Fria 22 Mohave 21
Friday night the Mohave Thunderbirds made the long trip in for a West Valley region game at Agua Fria. The game started ugly as the first quarter was an exchange of punts and penalties. This formula lead to few offensive highlights and no points for either team in the first quarter.
The second quarter begins with Mohave threatening behind the running and receiving of RB Trevor Hicks, the Mohave threat is quickly extinguished when Agua Fria corner Jeremiah Arredondo picks off a Mohave pass. Eventually Agua Fria is able to get its offense in gear. Owl QB Mitch Wolfe orchestrates a drive behind a twenty six yard pass to TE Thomas French and the running and receiving of RB Everson Griffen. After a fourteen yard gain on a screen pass to Griffen, Agua Fria finds itself on the Mohave six yard line. At this point, the Owls Kessiena Otite pounds the ball in for the first score of the night. PAT good. Agua Fria 7 Mohave 0. The quarter continues with the teams trading turnovers. Eventually Mohave is forced to punt from its end zone. Agua Fria receives the ball on the Mohave thirty one yard line. On the first play of the drive Wolfe hits his big RB Everson Griffen on a short catch that Griffen turns up field for a nice thirty yard gain all the way to the one yard line. On the next play Otite barrels in for his second TD of the Quarter. PAT good Agua Fria 14 Mohave 0. Mohave's Jon Wescom makes the end of the half interesting as he takes off on the ensuing kickoff for a near TD only to be dragged down by the Owls Jeremiah Arredondo. Score at Half Agua Fria 14 Mohave 0.
Mohave receives the second half kick off and gets in double tight I and rides on the legs of Senior RB Trevor Hicks. Hicks gets Mohave deep into Owl territory but the drive stalls and the Thunderbirds are forced to settle for a field goal. On the play, a roughing the kicker penalty is called, giving Mohave 1st and goal on the six yard line. Hicks takes the ball on Iso right and scores. PAT good Agua Fria 14 Mohave 7. The teams continue the quarter with little offensive production. Eventually Mohave gets the ball and on their own thirty one yard line Hicks takes off for a sixty nine yard touchdown run. PAT good. Agua Fria 14 Mohave 14.
The fourth quarter both teams revert back to their offensive futility and follow the punt, turnover, penalty formula. Late in the fourth, Agua Fria takes the ball and gets in its two minute O. QB Mitch Wolfe does a nice job of moving the chains on passes to John Coker and Nick Martinez. The Owls are threatening only to have a couple of penalties and sacks sabotage what could have been the game ending drive. Mohave gets the ball with six seconds left in the game. They try Hicks up the middle but the Owls hold. Here comes OT.
The Owls win the crucial OT coin toss and elect to defer. Mohave gets the first possession and on the first play Hicks goes pitch left for a ten yard, crowd silencing TD. PAT good. Mohave 21 Agua Fria 14.
The Owls begin their ten yard possession throwing. The first play is a dropped pass in the left flat. The second play Wolfe hits WR Nick Martinez on an out pattern for a TD. This is where things get fun. On the PAT, kicker Rupert Alvarez splits the uprights for a successful conversion. On the kick, Alvarez is roughed. Agua Fria head coach Kelley Epley, throws conventional wisdom to the dogs takes the points off the board and elects to go for two. On the next play, a nervous Agua Fria crowd watches big Everson Griffen plunge into end zone for the game winning two point conversion. Agua Fria wins 22 to 21!!
Bottom Line: This was one ugly game. Both teams have a lot of youth and it looked like they had a case of the midseason blahs. Much of the game looked like both teams were trying to figure out ways to give the other team the win. That said, a win is a win and Agua Fria is now 2-0 in region play, with big games remaining with rivals Buckeye and Millennium.
Game Balls: Mohave's Trevor Hicks is a whale of a ball player. The 6'3 195 pound senior made big plays for his team seemingly on cue. He lined up as tailback and in the slot as well as playing corner. He kept Mohave in the game. If he played in the valley you would hear a ton more about him. Agua Fria's John Coker once again made defensive plays all over the field. He gets a piece of everything. At 160 pounds soaking wet, wearing socks and his helmet, Coker may be the smallest backer in 4A but he just keeps making plays. Agua Fria head coach Kelly Epley. It took major huevos to take those points off the board and go for the game winning two. He did with no hesitation and it paid off for the Owls.