Strong second half not enough for Aztecs
LANCASTER • Some first-half mistakes proved costly for the Aztecs, as Antelope Valley beat Barstow, 21-9, in high school football action Friday in Lancaster.
The Aztecs gave up a touchdown in the first quarter and two more in the second. Sultan Hamdan kicked a 31-yard field goal in the second to get Barstow on the board, but the visitors trailed, 21-3, at halftime.
“It was a weird game for us. We gave up three big plays in the first half, then held them scoreless in the second,” said Aztecs head coach Mike Esposito, who saw his team beat Littlerock in its season opener last week. “It’s like two steps forward, one step back.”
The Aztecs scored in the third, converting on a recovered fumble at the 9 yardline. That began a series of three plays where Barstow went 91 yards in less than 40 seconds, culminating in James Noble getting the lone Aztecs’ touchdown.
“Noble had 319 yards, that must be some kind of record,” said Esposito. “We rushed for 380 yards in a losing effort.”
The Aztecs played with a back-up, Kyle Reeves, filling in at quarterback. Starter Tracy Venable was injured in last week’s game and was kept off the field Friday, as a precaution. Esposito is hoping Venable will play this week, but Reeves will be ready again, just in case.
Now 1-1, Barstow will look to go over .500 this Friday, with a game at Yucca Valley.
“We have the talent here,” said coach Esposito. “Jelling together as a team is what we need.”