Pacers pounce on Miners
DEL PASO HEIGHTS ” Lincoln Dupree survived a pounding from the Nevada Union football team Friday night like so few running backs before him.
The senior bulled for 122 yards in 16 carries as Grant grabbed a 13-0 first-quarter lead and held on for a key 21-7 victory over the Miners in a Capital Athletic League opener.
“Lincoln stepped up and became a running back when we needed him,” Grant coach Mike Alberghini said. “That makes us a tough team to defend.”
Pacers quarterback Tavorie Block added 102 yards passing and 37 yards rushing, much of which would have been negative yardage had he not avoided numerous sack attempts with his lightning quick scrambling activity.
“All we had to do was get our offense going because our defense can play, and nobody can come back on us,” Block said.
Grant held NU’s explosive wing-T offense to 140 total yards. Isaac Ostrom led the Miners (0-1, 3-1) with just 51 yards in 14 carries ” about 100 yards below his average. Quarterback Chad Elliott was 3-of-9 passing for 30 yards.
Alberghini felt his team’s sheer defensive speed kept the Miners from getting too tricky.
“We discouraged their X-factor with flat motion,” he said. “They have a sophomore quarterback and I think we rattled him.”
Miners coach Dave Humphers didn’t fault Elliott.
“Chad played great ” we dropped four of his passes,” Humphers said. “They just outplayed us, and we’ve got to get better.”
The Pacers (1-0, 3-0) were particularly unstoppable in the first quarter.
After Grant received the opening kickoff, Block keyed a 13-play, 88-yard scoring drive with an 18-yard screen pass and some crafty running.
Block capped the drive by ducking under a would-be sacker, darting up the middle and cutting left into the clear for a 27-yard scoring run just over five minutes into the game.
“We wanted to throw short tonight because (the Miners) play deep so well,” Block said. “We figured we could go deep, but we didn’t need to the way we were running the ball.
“I know I can scramble and get around people.”
A penalty against the Miners enabled the Pacers to kick off from the 50. Anthony Zairus planted it in the end zone and NU took over at its own 20. Three plays later, a third-down sack of Elliott by preseason All-America Clyde Sanders forced a punt.
Dixon fielded the short kick at the Miners’ 40, bolted up the left sideline, cut back across the middle and found the end zone. Isaac Ostrom gave NU some hope by blocking the PAT, but the Miners trailed 13-0 with 3:49 left in the first quarter.
Dupree, playing safety, stopped NU five plays into its next drive with an interception at midfield. But Miners cornerback Mike Dwyer returned the favor three plays later.
Dwyer returned the pickoff for an apparent touchdown, but a clipping penalty brought it back to midfield. Penalties ” 102 yards of them ” would frustrate the Miners throughout the evening.
So would turnovers, like the fumble that stopped NU’s ensuing drive.
Nevada Union continued to struggle after halftime, punting after three plays. Grant then put the game away with a 14-play, 82-yard drive capped by Dupree’s 10-yard burst up the middle. Eric Grays added a two-point conversion run.
The Miners managed to avert a shutout on their ensuring drive, as Ostrom capped a 13-play, 75-yard march with a one-yard plunge. The NU defense, led by Matt Beck’s nine solo tackles and four assists, managed to keep the Pacers in check down the stretch.
But penalties and dropped passes kept the Miner offense, running without huddles, from catching up.
Galloway finished with six solo tackles, five assists and two sacks for NU, while Kaniella Narretto had five solos and Nathan Allen four solos and a sack.
The Miners will host El Camino next Friday night.
Nevada Union 0 0 0 7 ” 7
Grant 13 0 8 0 ” 21
G ” Tavorie Block 27 run (Anthony Zairis kick)
G ” Andre Dixon 40 punt return (kick blocked)
G ” Lincoln Dupree 10 run (Eric Grays run)
NU ” Isaac Ostrom 1 run (Zack McSweeney kick)
Total offense 140 281
First downs 9 12
Rushes-yards 35-110 40-179
Passing 30 102
Comp-Att-Int 3-9-1 9-15-1
Fumbles-Lost 1-1 0-0
Penalties-yards 12-102 16-140
Rushing ” Nevada Union, Ostrom 14-51, Matt Beck 6-24, Jesse Wheeler 6-23, Bill Beede 20-14, Mike Fouyer 3-9, Brandon Brooke 1-6, Chad Elliot 3-(-17). Grant, Dupree 16-122, Block 6-27, Grays 10-14, Paul Mitchell 4-13, John Hernandez 2-3, Brian Stallworth 1-1, James Hinex 1-(-1).
Passing ” Nevada Union, Elliott 3-9-1 30. Grant, Block 9-15-1 102.
Receiving ” Nevada Union, Mike Dwyer 2-22, Ostrom 1-6. Grant, Greg Dupree 3-44, Dixon 3-33, Hernandez 1-11, Dupree 1-10.
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