MABTON — The Vikings stood their ground with a grueling 15-7 victory against the Spartans on a hot summer Saturday afternoon at Keith Morris Field.
Mabton High School head coach Pat Zavala was proud of his squad and their conditioning. His team weathered the high 80s temperature. “Our guys battled, it showed, we outlasted them. We were better conditioned,” said Coach Zavala.
Late in the second quarter, time was stopped at 4:11 when MHS sophomore Jesus Carreon sustained an injury on the field. The Vikings trailed 7-0 when the all-league standout player suffered a double fracture around his knee.
Following Carreon being transported off the field, the Vikings were determined to keep pushing on.
Sophomore quarterback, Andrez Zavala demonstrated his goal line determination by scoring a touchdown on a second and goal, quarterback sneak into the endzone.
After the point after touchdown was good, the game was tied at 7-7 with 2:47 remaining in the quarter.
“It’s my offense, he has the plays and I call them, I read them off of defenses and make calls,” Zavala commented.
On the ensuing kick-off, Granger junior Jonathan Mendoza returned it to the house for an apparent TD. There was a flag on the play for an illegal block. The penalty took away the Spartan’s six points. Their offense took over at their own 20-yard line.
Both offenses were unable to score before halftime and the game went into the intermission tied at 7.
The Vikings pulled ahead in the third quarter, on a 20-yard pass from Zavala to senior Armando Morales, who juked his defender for a clear path to the endzone. The Vikings added a 2-point conversion on a QB sneak by Zavala.
Neither team scored in the final quarter and the Vikings remained strong while they won on their home turf, 15-7.
Spartan junior, running back Ismael Torres rushed for 26 yards.
“My main goal was to get all my teammates to play hard and tuff. . .we are going to practice hard, all my team is going to get it, and that’s it,” Torres explained.
Head Coach Gary Ely spoke optimistically about what their team needs are, “Continue to improve, continue to learn, it’s going to be really huge for these guys to get game film. . .”
Ely exalted at the idea of getting his whole team back to full health and be able to have more options for this week’s home game against Wahluke.
The Vikings will play at Columbia-Burbank High School.
Both games will begin at 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 13.