Football: CVC falls to 4-3 after loss to Kingsburg
The Cavaliers lost 34-20 after a slow start against the Vikings
By Jermaine Johnson II @Jerm_10
VISALIA – The Vikings remain undefeated after beating the Cavaliers 34-20.
Kingsburg showed why they are 7-0 with an all-around strong showing on both sides of the ball in a winning effort. They have positioned themselves as a favorite to finish atop the Central Sequoia League. For CVC, they have already tied their loss total from last season, with three more games to play this season.
The Vikings were ready to play from their opening drive. They moved the ball with ease as junior Blake Spomer put his team on the board first with a 30-yard run. After that, both defenses held up strong for the next few possessions. The Cavalier offense got the big play they needed with a long catch by senior Logan Jacobi that put them right outside of the red zone. They converted a critical third down and then followed that up with a touchdown pass from senior Tyce Griswold to junior Ethan Hansen.
With the game tied at 7, Kingsburg responded immediately. Their quarterback Travis Hall took matters into his own hands. On one play, he evaded two blitzers that had a clean shot at him, and then threw a first down pass. Then he lined up in the shotgun formation and dropped the snap, picked up the ball, and threw a 60-yard touchdown pass to Spomer.
This was Hall’s first game of the season as his team’s quarterback. He actually began the season playing wide receiver for the Vikings and he had missed some time after suffering a turf toe injury back in week three. But in the game at Exeter last week, starting quarterback Jett Jackson suffered a major knee injury.
“Hall looked at me after the [Exeter] game and was like coach I’m going to play quarterback next week,” Kingsburg head coach David Wilson said. “We knew what he brought us at quarterback, it was just a matter of if he would play. We kind of had an advantage because they hadn’t seen him.”
With a 14-7 lead, Kingsburg’s defense continued their high level of play. They stuffed CVC on a fake punt on fourth down, which gave the offense another opportunity to score. A few passes got them to the red zone, and then a connection between Hall and junior Kaden Tate got them on the board. Hall finished with 280 yards passing, 3 scores through the air, and an interception.
CVC went into halftime trailing 21-7, but Hughes felt as if there were no schematic adjustments that needed to be made.
“I thought we weren’t playing aggressive. I saw a passive team, a team trying not to make mistakes instead of just going after it,” he said. “I thought we had to play meaner, tougher, and more physical.”
CVC got the ball to start the second half, but they went three and out. Their defense tightened up and forced the Vikings to do the same, and then they got a much-needed momentum changer. Kingsburg lined up to punt on fourth down, but couldn’t handle the snap. This allowed CVC to take over at midfield. That’s when their offensive star Jaalen Rening put the team on his back. He didn’t break off any big runs, but he was able to steadily move his team down the field on this possession. He capped off the drive with a 13-yard run into the end zone, cutting his team’s deficit down to 21-13. Rening ended with 154 yards rushing and two touchdowns, but it took him 35 carries to get there.
Blake Spomer really had his fingerprints all over this game. Following the CVC touchdown, Spomer took the kick off return nearly 40 yards to midfield. He followed that up with a 40-yard dash into the end zone, putting the Vikings back up by two touchdowns. CVC had their own great kickoff return that set them up in the red zone, but their offense stalled and turned the ball over on downs. The Vikings led 28-13 heading into the final period.
The Cavaliers were able to stay in the game with the help of their defense. Despite a two-touchdown lead, Kingsburg came out throwing the ball in the fourth quarter. That led to an interception and CVC’s offense got the ball just shy of the red zone. Rening helped cut his team’s deficit to eight points with a 13-yard run into the end zone with about nine minutes to go.
Kingsburg did their best to seal the victory on the next possession. Their passing game got them down the field and they scored another touchdown. This time was a connection between Hall and junior Kaden Tate. That would be the final score of the game as the Cavs tried to march down the field, but threw a late interception.