By Jim Predmore
What happens when you have two teams face off with the same record and going into the most anticipated game of the year? You get a real nail biter. That’s what happened last Friday night as the Calipatria Hornets hosted the Holtville Vikings in the Axe Game. Two teams faced each other with a 7-2 record on the year and both teams 3-1 in the Manzanita League.
The Hornets got on the board first as they scored a touchdown 5 minuets into the game. Then the battle began as Holtville continued getting the ball in deep in their own territory. They achieved a 1st and goal several times, but were held by the Hornet defense. Holtville turned the ball over 4 times on 4 down conversions. This left the Hornets with the ball very close to the Viking goal line. This was a reoccurring situation for most of the game. In the last few minuets of the game, the Vikings had another chance on 4th down and what looked to be a touchdown. With a mixed call by the referees, the ball was called back and the Hornets got the ball on the 1 foot line. The Vikings held the Hornets and got the ball back on the twenty yard line, and this time they drove in into the end zone with 90 seconds left on the clock. The extra point tied up the game and took it into overtime. In High School Football, when a game goes into overtime, each team gets one chance with the ball starting at the 25 yard line. The Vikings got the ball first. The Vikings drove the ball downfield, getting 2 first downs. The ball ended up on the 1 yard line with a 4th down and goal. On a 1 yard run by Espinoza, the Vikings scored and with the extra point went up 14-7. The Hornets then had their turn to try to score. With the ball on the 25 yard line, the Hornets worked their way down the field and quickly found themselves in a fourth down and goal situation. Hornet quarterback Evan Franklin found David Manglallan for a 3-yard touchdown pass to set the Hornets up for a shot at a win. The Hornets decided to go for the 2 point conversion.
Franklin rolled out to his right and threw a pass on the run to Gilbert Aguayo, but the pass went off Aguayo’s fingers and fell to the ground, giving the win to the Vikings and letting the Vikings hold on to the Axe for another year. The Vikings will host Army-Navy tonight in their first CIF playoff game.