By Sam Conner
The Winslow Bulldogs defeated the Monument Valley Mustangs 53-14 last Friday night at Kayenta. The win improved Winslow’s record to 4-3 for the season while Monument Valley fell to 3-4.
The win also improved Winslow’s playoff possibilities and greatly increased the team’s likelihood of securing a first round home game. The most difficult section of the schedule is past, leaving games with teams against whom the Bulldogs should be favored.
The Winslow defense completely kept the Mustang offense bottled up until the game was decided and the Bulldogs were playing reserves. The Bulldog offense dominated the game, as well, and there was soon no doubt of the outcome. This was true despite the absence of at least three important starters.
Winslow drove 71 yards and scored on its first possession of the game. C.J. Chacon ran seven yards for the touchdown and Rodney Davis booted the conversion for a 7-0 lead with 8:58 left in the opening quarter.
Monument Valley fell victim to the Bulldog defense on its first possession when James Martinez picked off a Mustang pass and raced 70 yards to score. Davis’ conversion gave the Bulldogs a 14-0 lead with 6:49 left in the quarter.
The next time the Bulldog offense was on the field Chacon scored his second touchdown on a 50-yard run. The conversion gave Winslow a 21-0 lead with 3:20 left in the quarter. That was the score entering the second period.
Midway through the second quarter the Bulldogs scored on a one-yard run by Akeem Foster. The conversion failed and Winslow led 27-0.
With 1:38 left to play in the half Martinez hit Davis with a 36-yard touchdown pass on a fourth down play. The conversion failed and Winslow led 33-0.
The Bulldogs got the ball back, and Martinez ran one yard to complete a two-play, 39-yard drive with just 50 seconds left in the first half. Nick Thomas booted the conversion for a 40-0 halftime lead.
The Bulldogs scored on their first possession of the second half on a 42-yard pass from Martinez to Demetrius Gamez. Thomas booted the conversion for a 47-0 lead with 6:19 left in the third quarter. That score also brought into effect the 42-point running clock mercy rule.
The Winslow defense scored again when Martinez took the ball away from a Mustang receiver after a complete pass and ran 12 yards for a touchdown. The conversion failed and Winslow led 53-0 with just over a minute left in the quarter.
Monument Valley came alive in the final period as Richmond Delmar ran two yards to get the Mustangs on the scoreboard with 6:26 left to play. A two-point conversion pass from Delmar to Keanu Mitchell was completed and cut Winslow’s still commanding lead to 53-8.
The Mustangs also scored on their next possession on a two-yard pass from Delmar to Jerron Bitloy. The two-point conversion attempt failed and Winslow led 53-14 with less than two minutes left to play.
The Bulldogs will host the Ganado Hornets on Friday, Oct. 18, in their Homecoming game. Ganado is 5-2 for the season, but has not played a very difficult schedule. The Hornets lost to Holbrook, 34-6, and Page, 61-28. Their wins were over Many Farms, Hopi, Red Mesa, Greyhills and Chinle.
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By Sam Conner