The “snake pit” saw some hard action Friday night as the Sharyland Rattlers took a hard-fought 19-10 win over the cross-town rival Pioneer Diamondbacks.
With Seth Carter at quarterback, the Rattlers struck first late in the first quarter with a touchdown pass to Manny Campos. Pioneer came right back about a minute and half later with their won score by Alec Garcia after a nice drive engineered by freshman quarterback Jacob Rosales.Moments later, the Pioneer defense rose up as Alberto Ruiz stole a Carter pass when he was hurried on his throw. But, the interception did no good, as the Diamondbacks went three and out. Pioneer Head Coach Jason Wheeler then began to alternate quarterbacks. Both sophomore Tyler Bulthuis and freshman Jacob Rosales were able to move the ball, but penalties kept hurting their drives.
Both teams’ defenses stiffened, and the only movement was on big plays. Pioneer shut down a Sharyland drive, allowing only an Andres Tamez field goal. Likewise, the Diamondbacks had a nice drive that included a long pass to Alec Garcia, only to be stuffed at the three yard line where they had to settle for a field goal. One more Sharyland field goal with five seconds left on the clock, and the teams went into their locker rooms at the half with the Rattlers up 13-10.
Adame went with Campos at quarterback during the entire second half, putting Carter all over the field as a receiver, while Wheeler continued swapping his quarterbacks. The third quarter was scoreless as both teams committed some costly penalties. Sharyland’s roughing the kicker penalty gave life to a Pioneer drive, but a chop block penalty by the Diamondbacks kept a Rattler drive going.
“We put ourselves in situations with those penalties,” Adame said. “It was a first and long, then a second and longer and that caused some real problems.”
It wasn’t until late in the fourth quarter that Sharyland was able to put the game away. After a Campos touchdown run was called back for holding, Carter scored on the next play with a nice run after catching the pass. With only a minute and a half left on the clock, the Sharyland defense put the clamps on any further Pioneer offense.
“I told our kids before the game that our playoffs have started” Adame said. “I could care less how many yards we had — we have to take care of these penalties. Next week we have Valley View, and we know they’ll be ready for us.”