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Home field advantage

Defense comes up big as Grizzlies win in first-ever home game at their own campus

Posted: October 4, 2008 9:24 p.m.
Updated: December 6, 2008 5:00 a.m.

Kilpatrick quarterback Michael Andrews, above with ball, attempts to score in the second quarter but is stopped by the Golden Valley defense.

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 With 38.1 seconds left in Golden Valley's first home football game ever, Camp Kilpatrick was 46 yards away from crashing the party.

Along came Grizzlies safety Jon Schlegel. The senior leaped and grabbed a pass by Mustangs quarterback Michael Andrews for an interception at the Golden Valley 6-yard line to seal a 7-6 win on Saturday afternoon.

It was the second interception of Andrews within the last 2:31 for Schlegel.

"The interceptions were huge," Schlegel said. "Our defense played good all game long. It wasn't just the picks, it was the whole defense."

Golden Valley (3-2) already has more wins in one season than it has ever earned in team history.

Its next game is at 7 p.m. on Oct. 17 at Valencia High against West Ranch, in both teams' Foothill League opener. Its next home game is at 7 p.m. at Canyon High against Valencia.

There were several hundred fans who cheered in the homecoming game, which was held under drizzling rain in the first half. The band played right behind the end zone and put on a postgame performance.

"The defense really made some big plays to save the game for us," Golden Valley head coach Steve Pinkston said. "It was great football weather. It feels like we're in the Midwest."

The Grizzlies' only touchdown was scored on a trick play 31 seconds into the second quarter. With nearly the entire offense faking a huddle near its own sideline, running back Joseph Figueroa took a direct snap from Schlegel.

Figueroa ran it 49 yards to paydirt, after he broke two tackles and stayed inbounds.

The "swinging gate" play worked for the 7-0 lead.

"They were quick to react to it," Figueroa said. "But we got it off just enough to get it in the end zone."

Kilpatrick scored its touchdown with 8:07 left in the game and due to a lack of a kicking game, could not tie it and force overtime.

Mustangs running back Frederik Blackshire took a screen pass and scored from 12 yards away. Andrews failed to convert on the two-point conversion, reaching the ball out a yard short of the goal line.

The Golden Valley defense prevented absolute disaster on the next possession. After Michael Ier dove to grab an interception thrown by GVHS quarterback Jimmy Hughes, Kilpatrick had the ball on the Grizzly 33.

On fourth-and-four, Golden Valley defensive lineman B.J. Leroy dragged Andrews down on a keeper, one of four fourth-down conversion attempts the Grizzlies stopped.

Both teams had trouble holding onto the football, fumbling at least five times each. Kilpatrick fumbled on fourth-and-two. On the next series, Figueroa fumbled on a double-pitch from Schlegel at the Mustang 14.

Early in the third quarter, Richard Sarabia fumbled. Schlegel recovered a drop in the next series of downs.

A series of firsts highlighted parts of Saturday's game.

Schlegel took a knee on the opening kickoff, Figueroa had the first offensive play, a 7-yard run.

With 11.5 seconds left in the first quarter, Bino Horne caught an 11-yard pass for the first passing first down.

Golden Valley recovered its first onside kick attempt, on the first play of the second half.

"It's unbelievable," Figueroa said. "It feels great just to get our first win on our own field."



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