Santa Rosa’s defense swarms Hamilton during Week Eight action. Valley News/Joe Quinn photo

Joe Quinn

— Special to the Valley News

— The Hamilton Bobcats met the Santa Rosa Rangers Saturday, Oct. 16, under the lights and given the first quarter activity, it looked to be a slow but “crunch football” game. Neither team managed significant early gains and indeed, through the night, there were few to speak of showing the strength of both team’s defensive units. A hard open field tackle by the Rangers Jeremiah Park seemed to symbolize the quarter that ended tied at zero and with only a few flashes by either team.

Hamilton did break away in the second quarter scoring on their second play of the drive after recovering a Ranger fumble on their six-yard line. QB Caleb Speir carried it in for the first score of the night. The conversion by Brady McDermott was good and they led 7-0. They weren’t done yet and after a Santa Rosa punt and a beautifully executed pass over the middle, which caught Alex Lopez in full stride, he was off on a long gain for the Bobcats’ second touchdown.

Although the half saw the Rangers head into the locker room down 14-0, they did not stay submissive and scored the only TD of the third quarter when Daniel Gonzalez took it in over right tackle. That lead only expanded as Hamilton scored again in the third on four long and fast plays that seemed to put the game away with a 21-6 lead.

Santa Rosa QB Adam Pinard looking downfield against Hamilton. Valley News/Joe Quinn photo

The fourth quarter reverted to the slow and hard action of the early game until the Bobcats fumbled the ball several yards forward from midfield on a hard tackle. Santa Rosa’s Brody Worthington scooped it up and advanced it to the Bobcats 45. From there the Rangers advanced quickly and on the fourth play from scrimmage, Adam Pinard lofted a bomb to Tyler Baxter in the back of the end zone bringing the Rangers seemingly into range, 21-12. The conversion failed. It was not to be for the Rangers of course as the score was late in the game and it ended with no further opportunities.

Along the way the game featured some strong punting by Sydney Geske, perhaps the only female in the league in varsity football and heads up running and gains by freshman Daniel Marlow. Santa Rosa is away this week at Perris, to play the California Military Academy. Both are at 2-2 in league play.

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