Hurwitz, Sprinkles rain on Reno homecoming parade
Sprinkles helped South Tahoe High cap a dramatic football win at Reno on Friday night, and this time, it didn’t refer just to the heroics of the team’s senior quarterback.
Senior quarterback Tim Sprinkles came off the bench to score three touchdowns for South Tahoe, complementing Jake Hurwitz’s 152 rushing yards in the Vikings’ 19-17 road win.
But some sprinkles of a different kind helped kill Reno’s final drive. Reno’s irrigation system made an appearance halfway through the third quarter, and cost the Huskies on their final drive when junior quarterback Sean Davis slipped on the wet field.
“That’s big, but those are the type of things that add up to winning the game,” said South Tahoe head coach Tim Jaureguito after his Vikings avenged last year’s disappointing loss to Reno. “But those are the types of things last week that added up to a loss.”
South Tahoe wasn’t just lucky in getting back on the winning track after an 18-17 loss to Hug on Sept. 16. The Vikings were good: The defense held the Northern Nevada 4A’s best passing attack to 44 yards. Mario Guerrero, Matt George and Justin Murray keyed the defense by hitting Reno’s backs and receivers hard and often – Murray set the tone with a crushing hit, popping Davis’s helmet off his head.
Hurwitz, a junior halfback and the league’s top rusher, gained more than half of his yards after halftime, and carried South Tahoe’s offense down the stretch.
“The line was making huge holes,” said Hurwitz, who carried the ball nine straight times on South Tahoe’s final drive. “That’s as helpful as it can get. The receivers were blocking great, we were running outside, running inside, just trying to keep the ball moving down the field.”
In a contrast to last year, when Huskies running back Marcus Corley kept the chains moving, Hurwitz kept Reno’s offense off the field with South Tahoe up 19-17. With a young, athletic line clearing the way, Hurwitz burned nearly three and a half minutes off the clock on South Tahoe’s last possession.
Reno, which missed a 29-yard field goal with 4:57 left in the quarter, had just 1:32 for its final drive. Davis threw a first down to wide receiver Ryan Kane over the middle. Kane couldn’t get out of bounds, and the clock continued to run. Then came the slip. Davis, who hurt the Vikings with his scrambling ability, was making a cut when he lost his footing. He threw to Kane again for another first down, but just 42 seconds remained. Davis completed two more passes, to Kane and Scott Beveridge, but South Tahoe’s defensive backs wouldn’t let the receivers out of bounds, and time ran out on Reno.
“This is a huge win for us,” Jaureguito said.
Last year, South Tahoe blew a 26-10 halftime lead as the Huskies scored 33 unanswered points and won 43-26. This year, the Vikings trailed 10-7 halftime, but made the big plays down the stretch for the win.
Sprinkles returned from a two-game absence to make quite a few of those. The senior, who tore his mediocollateral ligament in a Sept. 4 win over Lowry, played less than three quarters, but had two touchdown passes, a touchdown run and 193 total yards.
Sprinkles threw South Tahoe’s first touchdown, a 16-yard fade into the end zone to wide receiver Immanuel Williams as South Tahoe took a 7-3 lead with 5:32 left in the second quarter.
“It felt so good to be back out there,” Sprinkles said.
Jaureguito had listed the senior as doubtful for the game, but decided late Thursday night to play him.
Williams set up South Tahoe’s second touchdown with a 33-yard catch to the one-yard line. Sprinkles plunged through one play later, making the score 13-10. After the Huskies blew up South Tahoe’s two-point conversion attempt, Reno took the lead again, going up 17-13 on an 81-yard touchdown run by Marc Kaiser.
But Williams had still another huge play in him. With South Tahoe facing third and 33, Sprinkles rolled to his right and bought enough time to find Williams, who tightroped the sideline 76 yards for his second touchdown catch.
“After the first couple of passes, I was back in midseason form,” Sprinkles said. “I’ve got to give all the credit to Immanuel. He made all the plays.”
The defense rose to the occasion, too. While the team gave up 152 rushing yards to Kaiser, just 17 came after his long touchdown. It held Beveridge, the league’s top receiver, to 11 yards. Senior cornerback George once again came up huge for South Tahoe, literally providing the winning margin for the second time in three games.
George, who intercepted Davis in the first half, blocked a potential game-winning kick early in the fourth quarter. With South Tahoe up 19-17, George rushed in and put his helmet on Kaiser’s 52-yard attempt as it left his foot.
“We’ve got me and Mario (Guerrero) on the outside, and we (send) whoever’s free, and they always pick up Mario,” George said.
Sprinkles left the game when he felt a twinge in his knee after a one-yard plunge for a first down. After South Tahoe went three and out, Reno drove to the Vikings’ 10 for another field goal attempt, which Kaiser missed wide right. From there, Hurwitz and starting quarterback Jarred Uppendahl launched South Tahoe’s last drive. Uppendahl and Hurwitz penetrated 45 yards into Reno territory, too deep for the Huskies to advance in a minute and a half South Tahoe improved to 4-1 with the win, bouncing back from its loss to Hug. Reno fell to 2-3 overall.
Notes: Guerrero left in the fourth quarter after taking a blow to the
head tackling Corley, but felt better after the game. Co-captain Ian
Price left with a meniscus injury.
South Tahoe 19, Reno 17
STHS: 0 7 12 0 19
RHS: 3 7 7 0 17
Reno, Kaiser 41-yard field goal
South Tahoe, Williams 16-yard pass from Sprinkles (Ortiz kick)
Reno, Corley one-yard run (Kaiser kick)
South Tahoe, Sprinkles one-yard run (kick failed)
Reno, Kaiser 81-yard run (Kaiser kick)
South Tahoe, Williams 76-yard pass from Sprinkles (pass failed)
Reno South Tahoe
Rush-yards: 26-270 37-141
Pass-yards: 7-13-1-44 10-17-0-179
Sacks-lost: 3-9 1-7
Punts: 3-111 6-175
Fumbles-lost: 1-0 1-0
Penalties-yards: 2-25 5-40
South Tahoe: Sprinkles 10-16-0-2-179; Uppendahl 0-1-0-0-0; Reno: Davis
7-12-1-0-44; Kaiser 0-1-0-0-0
South Tahoe: Hurwitz 31-145-0; Sprinkles 4-14-1; Uppendahl 1-(-7)-0;
Williams 1-(-11)-0; Reno: Kaiser 10-152-1; Corley 18-89-1; Davis 7-27-0;
South Tahoe: Williams 5-138-2; Arzio 4-27-0; Seeley 1-14-0; Reno: Kane
4-28-0; Beveridge 2-11-0; Kaiser 1-5-0
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