Vikings miss opportunity to upset Hug
For the second straight week, South Tahoe High left Viking Bowl feeling like it allowed a potential victory slip through its fingers.
South Tahoe committed six turnovers and made several key penalties in a 27-6 nonleague football defeat to the Hawks on Saturday.
Two first-quarter fumbles doomed the Vikings as Hug built a 20-0 lead. The Vikings missed an opportunity to take an early lead, but fumbled at the Hawks’ 2-yard line.
Several plays later, Jevon Brown went on a 55-yard jaunt, only to be caught from behind by Thomas Eidam at the STHS 30. Hug senior quarterback A.J. Bennett then fired a 30-yard scoring strike to Derek Butler – the first of his three touchdown passes.
Hug’s defense, which was put in some tight spots throughout the afternoon, delivered a key play on the next series, pressuring Eidam and forcing a fumble at the Viking 7. Brown cashed in the mistake from a yard out as the first period expired, making the score 14-0.
Hug capitalized on another STHS fumble early in the second quarter when Bennett fired a 29-yard touchdown pass to Tre Johnson. The Hawks missed the point after but still led 20-0.
The rout appeared to be on, but a pinpoint Vikings’ passing game directed by Eidam and repeated botched handoffs by the Hawks kept the home team within striking range.
South Tahoe outplayed the Hawks in the second quarter as Eidam and receivers Rigel Garman, Garrett Tinlin and Matt Olivares-Laine begin to pick apart the Hug secondary.
The Vikings put together an impressive 70-yard drive that consumed 8 minutes of the period. South Tahoe twice converted two fourth downs before Eidam capped the 17-play scoring drive on a keeper from three yards out. A bad center snap kept the score at 20-6 with 2:11 to go in the half.
Despite ending the half trailing by two touchdowns, the Vikings ran 25 more offensive plays than the Hawks.
Hug lost six of its seven fumbles – three of which were recovered by junior Wade Norberg.
The Hawks finished the scoring on their first possession of the third quarter when Bennett zipped a 30-yard scoring pass to Isi Lotulelei, who ran into the clear over the middle of the field.
Eidam completed 23-of-35 pass attempts for 214 yards. His primary targets were Garman, who caught a career-high eight passes for 95 yards; Olivares-Laine, six catches for 52 yards; and Tinlin, five grabs for 48 yards.
South Tahoe will have an extra week to prepare for its Sierra Division opener Sept. 18 at Carson.
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A grand opening will be held for Chick-fil-A Carson Valley, located at 4751 Cochise St., on Jan. 21.