Othello spoils Quincy Homecoming night
The visiting Othello Huskies came away with a 23-6 victory over the Jacks on a cold, windy Friday night at Jackrabbit Stadium.
The Jacks were led by senior quarterback Isaiah Ayala and senior receiver Nate Ortiz, who connected for Quincy’s only touchdown of the game in the second quarter.
“Othello played really well defensively. We didn’t get the ball much, they kept the ball away from us in the first half,” said Head Coach Wade Petersen.
The Jacks defense started strong, forcing a turnover on downs on the first Othello possession. Unfortunately, the offense fumbled the ball on its first play and gave it right back to the visitors.
The Huskies worked their way down the field with run-heavy play calling, and capped off the drive with a 5-yard touchdown run for the first score of the game with 3:25 left in the opening quarter.
The Jacks were unable to get anything going again on the next possession and punted. The opening period ended with the green and gold trailing 6-0.
The Jacks gained some momentum in the second quarter. After senior Connor Donovan partially blocked an Othello punt, the Jacks took possession on their own 31 yard line. Othello sacked Ayala on the ensuing possession but was whistled for a facemask penalty, moving the Jacks up to midfield.
From there, Ayala connected with Ortiz for a 54-yard touchdown strike with 7:27 left in the half. The point after attempt was blocked, so the game remained tied 6-6.
The Jacks defense forced another turnover on downs on the next Husky possession but lost the ball once again on a fumble the following possession. The visitors had a touchdown called back in the final seconds of the second quarter, and the teams headed into the break still tied at 6-6.
The green and gold opened the second half turning it over on downs and losing Ayala to a collar bone injury. Junior quarterback Alex Aguila replaced Ayala for the rest of the game.
“We try preaching to our kids to prepare yourself all week and preparing yourself in the off-season so when your time comes and you get the chance, you’re ready and you can step in,” said Petersen. “I was really pleased with the way he [Aguila] stepped in there tonight.”
The visitors took advantage of the turnover and ran the ball down into the red zone before settling for a field goal attempt. The kick was good, increasing their lead to 9-6 with a little over three minutes left in the quarter.
Quincy was forced to punt yet again on the next possession, and Othello started from midfield on the following possession. The Huskies strung together a few first downs, wearing down the tired Jacks defense.
The visitors tacked on another score, connecting on a short 11-yard touchdown pass with 10:01 left in the game to give them a 16-6 lead. The Huskies got the ball right back after forcing a Jacks punt on the ensuing possession.
Othello sealed the deal gaining a first down on a fake punt with about five minutes left in the game and punched in another touchdown run from 7 yards out with just 1:44 left in the contest.
“We talked about it in our scouting report, that’s exactly the fake [punt] we had worked on,” said Petersen. “You get late in the game there and kids are really tired, sometimes that mentally affects you.”
The Jacks return to action next Friday, Oct. 4, in a matchup against Wapato on the road at 7 p.m.
Quincy High School celebrated Homecoming during halftime of the football game against Othello with performances by the cheer squad, dance team and marching band. Afterward, students riding on floats towed by trucks drove the track, and the cross country team lit the giant Q for the traditional blaze, this time in the northeast corner of the new QHS stadium.
Quincy 6, Othello 23
Ayala – 2/6, 67 yards,
Vargas – 9 attempts,
Ortiz – 1 catch, 54 yards, 1 touchdown
By Miles King, firstname.lastname@example.org