Saturday, October 18, 2014

Monterey Trail Scares Grant, But Pacers Hold On To Win

Monterey Trail’s veer offense put on quite an offensive show Friday night. The Mustangs ran an amazing 77 plays from the line of scrimmage, gained 471 yards, 380 of that on the ground.

Yet they lost the game.

Undefeated Grant (7-0, 4-0) came to Mark Macres Memorial Stadium that night showing exactly why they are the team to beat in the Delta League this season.

The Pacers responded to the Mustangs’ ground game with quite a display of running the football themselves. Behind tailback Deshawn Collins, who scored five touchdowns, three of those in the third quarter alone, Grant sprinted through Mustang defenders for a 54-29 win.
MT's T.J.Ewing watches his team prep for Grant Friday

“They did a good job making adjustments in the second half offensively,” Monterey Trail head coach T.J. Ewing said. “They blocked it well. They are a very explosive team. They are huge. (The running backs) hide behind their line.  (Collins) is a bit of a little guy and by time you look around those big trees, he’s around the corner and he’s gone.”

-------- Friday's Scores ----------
Elk Grove 42, Pleasant Grove 14
Franklin 49, Davis 13
Cosumnes Oaks 25, Antelope 13
Bradshaw Christian 36, Golden Sierra 28
Laguna Creek 44, Florin 6

The Pacers proved exactly that, unstoppable, particularly in the second half where they scored 40 points. They averaged 9.7 yards per play while gaining 327 yards on the ground. Collins was responsible for 223 of those yards on just 17 carries. He scored on runs of  16, 18, 33, 16 and nine yards behind a huge offensive line that tilts the scales to more than 300 pounds on average.

But, Mustang fans had something to cheer – and at times, to boo about – particularly in the first half. Monterey Trail had a 15-14 halftime lead.

Cheers were for how effective Trey Nahhas, the Mustang workhorse was. He had 152 yards rushing on 24 carries by intermission with a TD. Plus, he threw a 41-yard scoring strike to Jermaine Bell in the second quarter.

The jeers were for the game officials who flagged Monterey Trail 11 times in the first half alone. At least three times plays in excess of ten yards were brought back for illegal use of the hands calls.

This led Ewing to delay play early in the third quarter to have a discussion with the game referee. He didn’t exactly reveal afterwards the content of that talk.

“Our guys fought through adversity,” he said. “That’s what I love about our players. They didn’t get rattled by it. The referees have a job to do. It’s tough to referee at any level.”
Monterey Trail was flagged 16 times total for 100 yards while Grant was penalized just four times.

The halftime margin could have been bigger for the Mustangs, too. Three times they went for it on fourth down yet failed each time.

“Our effort was fantastic tonight,” Ewing said. “Our kids played outstanding. I was proud of our players in how they sacrifice for each other.”

Ewing didn’t quit trying for some extra yardage on fourth down in the third quarter. After Grant took the opening kickoff of the second half quickly downfield to take the lead for good at 22-15, the Mustangs’ coach went for it on a fourth-and-three at their own 33. Nehhas was stopped on a simple dive play for no gain.

Collins scored on the next play for Grant to extend the lead to 28-15.

“We took a couple chances and it just didn’t work for us,” Ewing explained.

Though Monterey Trail came back on a nicely-executed 10-play, 75 yard scoring drive to narrow the margin to 28-22, the Mustangs just couldn’t stop the Pacers the rest of the way.

“Our defensive execution fell apart for us,” Ewing admitted. “We’ll have to look back at the video and then make sure we are coaching our players better and make sure they are in the right spots and to that better.”

Ewing also had high praise for the play of Nahhas who carried the ball 44 times for 254 yards.

“The guy is a special player,” Ewing said. “He exemplifies what we want our student/athletes at the school to be. He wants to give himself every opportunity to compete. He wants to have the ball in his hands in crucial parts of the game and make the difference.”

Monterey Trail started the season with five straight wins, but has now lost back-to-back games. They are staring at a 2-2 mark in the Delta, tied for third place, with a big showdown against Elk Grove this Friday.

“They are a really good program,” Ewing commented. “Coach (Chris) Nixon has done a good job. He has some excellent football players. It’s going to be a great football game.”

The Herd bounced back from a pair of losses on Friday with a 42-14 romp over Pleasant Grove to also pull to .500 in league play at 2-2.

Box Score (Final)

  Score by Quarters     1  2  3  4   Score
  -----------------           -- -- -- --   -----
  Grant.....................  14  0 22 18  - 54       Record: (7-0,4-0)
  Monterey Trail......  7    8  7   7    - 29       Record: (5-2,2-2)

  Scoring Summary:                                                                GR - MT

  1st Quarter
09:54 MT - Trey Nahhas 2 yd run (Miguel Lopez kick)

                                              6 plays, 72 yards, TOP 2:06         0 - 7

08:58 GR - Deshawn Collins 16 yd run (Dallas Vue kick)

                                              2 plays, 35 yards, TOP 0:56         7 - 7

00:22 GR – Donovan Brown 44 yd run (Vue kick)

                                              5 plays, 81 yards, TOP 1:55        14 - 7

  2nd Quarter
08:06 MT - Jermaine Bell 41 yd pass from Nahhas (Nahhas rush)

                                              8 plays, 80 yards, TOP 4:16        14 - 15

  3rd Quarter
10:16 GR - Collins 18 yd run (Collins rush)

                                              6 plays, 50 yards, TOP 1:44        22 - 15

08:01 GR - Collins 33 yd run (Vue kick failed)

                                               1 play, 33 yards, TOP 0:08        28 - 15

03:31 MT - Nahhas 3 yd run (Lopez kick)

                                             10 plays, 75 yards, TOP 4:30        28 - 22

00:14 GR - Collins 16 yd run (David Moala pass)

                                              7 plays, 59 yards, TOP 3:17        36 - 22

  4th Quarter
09:29 GR -  Collins 9 yd run ( Vue kick blocked)

                                              3 plays, 58 yards, TOP 1:21        42 - 22

 04:48 MT - Bell 13 yd pass from EJ Viacrusis (Lopez kick)

                                             12 plays, 71 yards, TOP 4:41        42 - 29

 04:27 GR - Mike Green 12 yd run (Vue kick failed)

                                              2 plays, 54 yards, TOP 0:21        48 - 29

 01:11 GR - Green 13 yd run (Ruben Garza kick failed)

                                              2 plays, 33 yards, TOP 0:57        54 - 29

                                                            GR       MT

  FIRST DOWNS...................          18          24

  RUSHES-YARDS (NET)............  32-327  66-380

  PASSING YDS (NET).............       43         91

  Passes Att-Comp-Int...........         6-4-0    11-5-0

  TOTAL OFFENSE PLAYS-YARDS.....38-370   77-471

  Fumble Returns-Yards..........       0-0      0-0

  Punt Returns-Yards............         0-0       0-0

  Kickoff Returns-Yards.........        4-91    8-151

  Interception Returns-Yards....      0-0      0-0

  Punts (Number-Avg)............      0-0.0    0-0.0

  Fumbles-Lost..................              1-1         1-1

  Penalties-Yards...............            4-17      16-101

  Possession Time...............        14:28        33:32

  Sacks By: Number-Yards........      1-2      1-9

  RUSHING: Grant-Deshawn Collins 17-223; Mike Green 8-82; Donovan Brown 5-18; Dorrzel Hicks 1-1.  Monterey Trail-Trey Nahhas 44-254; EJ Viacrusis
11-86; Adrian Tellez 8-30; Jarel Wilson 2-8; Robert Holt 1-2.

  PASSING: Grant-Donovan Brown 4-6-0-43. Monterey Trail-EJ Viacrusis 2-6-0-18; Robert Holt 1-3-0-2; Trey Nahhas 1-1-0-41; Jermaine Bell 1-1-0-30.

  RECEIVING: Grant-Ariyon Huff 3-36; Jacques Cheatham 1-7. Monterey
Trail-Jermaine Bell 2-54; Andre Flury 2-35; Jarel Wilson 1-2.

  INTERCEPTIONS: Grant-None. Monterey Trail-None.

  Stadium: MTHS                  Attendance: 1500

  Kickoff time: 7:15 pm   End of Game:    9:50 p.m.

  Temperature: 72        Wind: WSW 7     Weather: partly cloudy

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