Spartans Play Spoiler With 49-43 Win Over Eastlake

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Spartans Play Spoiler With 49-43 Win Over Eastlake

Senior Kylar Sanchez runs the ball during the second quarter in the Spartans 49-43 win Sept. 26

Senior Kylar Sanchez runs the ball during the second quarter in the Spartans 49-43 win Sept. 26

Floyd Stevens II Teal Tribune

Senior Kylar Sanchez runs the ball during the second quarter in the Spartans 49-43 win Sept. 26

Floyd Stevens II Teal Tribune

Floyd Stevens II Teal Tribune

Senior Kylar Sanchez runs the ball during the second quarter in the Spartans 49-43 win Sept. 26

Yasmine Quirino, Reporter

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Players began to cheer and seemed to be inspired when head coach Mark Torres walked in minutes before the game and was greeted by his team shortly before running out and onto the field. Many believed that Torres wasn’t going to show up due to the birth of his second daughter, Jasmine Elise.

Torres and his wife welcomed their daughter and posted a picture 12 hours ago via Twitter.

“I was very very thankful that baby’s healthy, mommy’s healthy and their being taken care of right now which allows me the chance to be here tonight,” Torres said. “So I’m very thankful, very grateful and have an attitude of gratitude right now. I really appreciate the love and support I get from everyone and the opportunity to be here as well”.

Throughout the first portion of the season, the Pebble Hills offense has been big, but today it was big plays on the defensive side of the ball that managed to pull out stops to get the Spartans the 49-43 win.

“The defense helped us out a lot today” said senior center Bryan Jimenez on what he felt was the key to victory. “They came up with a stop at the end.”

Early in the first quarter, Pebble Hills had the 14-7 lead after senior quarterback Sebastian Ochoa connected to senior Isaiah Davis for a 6-yard touchdown.

Shortly after, the defense gave away a big play that could have possibly ended in points, but senior Elijah Davis never gave up on the play and caught up to the player from Eastlake and dragged him down to prevent the Falcons from tying the game.

Staying strong Eastlake’s Orion Olivas connected with Matt Jones for a 10-yard touchdown pass to cut the deficit and make it a one-possession game, and that is when senior wide receiver Kylar Sanchez stepped up and scored back-to back-touchdowns extending the 35-15 lead to end the first half.

The intensity of the game went back and forth throughout the second half along with countless penalties.

With numerous defensive players injured, Torres looked to his offensive players to play both sides of the ball. Anthony Donacio, Arturo Salazar and Isaiah Davis did not get rest as their numbers were called.

“It comes down to who is on the field,” Torres said. “We had a couple of guys go down, and we had to have some offensive players step up and play a little defense. We just had guys step up and into positions they aren’t normally used to playing.”

The Falcons recovered an onside kick and were in position to win the game with a little over a minute left in regulation, but another defense stop helped the Spartans clinch the win.

Pebble Hills takes the final lead of 49-43 and improves to 3-2 on the season. The Spartans head into a bye week to make any adjustments needed just before the start of the district season. The following week Pebble Hills will square off against Socorro Bulldogs as the visiting team Friday evening, Oct. 11.

Photos by Paulina Loya and Floyd Stevens