L. Scott Bennett Photo/Gila Herald: Fort Thomas QB Todd Stringfellow (15) stiff-arms his opponent. The Apaches rolled over the San Pasqual Valley Warriors, 56-0.
By L. Scott Bennett
FORT THOMAS – It was all Fort Thomas on Friday night as the Apaches evened their record at 2 – 2 after a dominating victory over the San Pasqual Valley Warriors (0-3). The winless Warriors traveled from Yuma to take on the Apaches at Elden Randall Field as the Apaches celebrated their homecoming Friday night. Perhaps the long drive tired out the Warriors as the hapless San Pasqual squad fell 56-0.
Fort Thomas started fast and quickly built up a 14 – 0 lead. It was only 3:02 in to the contest when Zack Walker took the ball in for the second Apache TD of the night. After the ensuing kickoff, Fort Thomas’ Darien McCabe picked off the Warrior QB near the Fort Thomas endzone and returned it to the Apache’s 37-yard line. McCabe was not done, playing on the offensive side of the ball as well, it took only a few plays before he caught a 38-yard Todd Stringfellow pass and gave Fort Thomas a 22-0 lead less than five minutes into the game.
After another Apache interception when Darious Antonio took the ball away, Fort Thomas would find the endzone for the fourth time of the first quarter when Stringfellow hit Antonio for the score. The first quarter would come to an end with the Apaches leading 30–0.
While it probably would have been better for San Pasqual to stop the game there so they could start the trip back to Yuma, the game continued, giving the Fort Thomas faithful a show on this homecoming night.
Forth Thomas would find the endzone twice more in the second quarter, with a 5-yard TD run from Desmond Cheney and a 2-yard run from Ramont Talgo on a 4th and goal play. After Talgo’s TD, the Apaches went up 42-0 and the rest of the game would be governed by the mercy rule.
Under the AIA’s mercy rule, once an opponent has a 42-point lead, the clock will no longer stop. Should the opposing team reduce the lead to less than 42 points, the traditional timing rules shall be reinstated until such time as a 42 point or greater lead is again established.
Absent two injury delays Friday night, the clock ran continually from 4:56 remaining in the first half to the final buzzer. With the running clock, the game sped up and scoring slowed down. The Apaches took a 42-0 lead into the locker room at half time.
With a running clock and the reserves in, the second half moved very quickly. Backup quarterback Tyler Black took the Apache snaps for the second half. Black was able to pick up right where Stringfellow left off, moving Fort Thomas down the field. Tyrone Wilson got in on the scoring action with a 9-yard TD run in the third, making it 50–0 after a successful 2-point play where Black called his own number and ran it in for the score. The Apaches concluded the scoring for the night in the fourth quarter when Stanley Loas carried it in from the 2-yard line.
With the 56-0 win, Fort Thomas head coach Bracken Walker was pleased with his team. When asked about the game Walker commented, “I thought we played well . . . Obviously we have a little more talent than San Pasqual did. I thought our kids handled homecoming . . . and all the distractions that go along with that well, and we took care of what we needed to get done.”
Next week, the (0-3) San Pasqual Valley warriors will have a much-needed bye week to regroup. The Apaches (2-2) will host the Saint David Tigers (1-2) on Friday night at Elden Randall Field in Fort Thomas.