Damarrio Hammonds looks to reverse his direction with Los Banos senior Alec Barcellos looking to plant and make the tackle.-----Erick Torres/Patterson Irrigator
Patterson junior Thomas Turner prepares to punt the ball on Oct. 17.-----Erick Torres/Patterson Irrigator
Patterson's Ruben Rosas Jr. takes the ball from quarterback Damien Paulo for a power run.-----Erick Torres/Patterson Irrigator
Running back Michael Lawson sprints past a Los Banos defender at Patterson Community Stadium.----Erick Torres/Patterson Irrigator
The Patterson High School varsity football team faced Los Banos High School in a duel to remain on top the Western Athletic Conference. Both teams came into Friday’s game with a 2-0 record in the league, but after the evening’s contest one team would slip lower in the standings moving forward in the 2014 season.
Los Banos High School was able to pull away with a victory 47-41 in a wild shootout between two rival teams that showed a lot of passion during the evening’s contest. The game was an instant classic with three different lead changes in the game including a memorable overtime thriller that ended in defeat for Patterson.
Head coach Nick Marchy spoke about the game following a bitter defeat that saw the visiting crowd celebrate in front of a disappointed Patterson squad. “Our kids played hard. It was back and forth,” said Marchy. “It was a shootout. We came up short in the end.” Patterson will have to forget the loss quickly and begin preparation for Pacheco High School next week who sits on top of the Western Athletic Standings with a 4-0 league record. “It’s not over. It’s far from over,” said Marchy. “If we win next week it puts us right back into it. We can’t take that second step back. We have to continue to fight.”
Patterson’s offense mustered a total of 382 yards on the evening. Quarterback Damien Paulo went 14-27 for 197 yards and three touchdowns. Running back Michael Lawson ran for 157 yards on the ground to go along with five receptions for 132 yards and two touchdowns.
The spark for Patterson came from wide receiver Damarrio Hammonds who racked up a total of four touchdowns. Two came by way of his talented special teams play. Hammonds returned two kick offs for touchdowns, and two more via passing. Hammonds caught a total of seven receptions for 41 yards, and compiled a total of 154 yards on special teams.
Hammonds commented on his mindset that continually allows him to put up dynamic returns plays every week on special teams. “I know I’ve got the team on my back,” said Hammonds. “So I have to make plays to put the team into good positions.”
Patterson was only moments away from victory. After failing to get a first down with less than a minute left in the fourth quarter to seal the game Patterson punted the ball, and hoped for one last defensive stand from their defense. Los Banos junior David Walker never let the defense take the field when he returned the punt 70 yards for a touchdown in a shocking play that saw him reverse the entire field and run down the sideline with haste all the way into the end zone tying the game at 41-41 forcing overtime.
Los Banos got the chance to score first in overtime after winning the toss. They converted a touchdown when Bailey Rodriguez pounded the ball inside for a one yard touchdown run. Patterson was able to block the extra point giving them a chance to win on their possession leaving the score at 47-41.
Patterson would try a rollout play on their first attempt at the end zone, but the pass missed the mark. Patterson would then dial up a play that led to an attempted pass from Damien Paulo to Damarrio Hammonds, but it was intercepted by Los Banos senior Jordan Smith to end Patterson’s hopes and conclude a victory for Los Banos. “We just tried to take a shot, but the ball was just a little bit underthrown,” said Marchy. “Enough for him(Smith) to get it and our kid to try and fight for it, but it fell right into his hands not ours.”
The loss drops Patterson’s record to 5-2 overall and 2-1 in the Western Athletic Conference tying them with Livingston for the third spot in the standings. They will return next week to play at Pacheco High School on Oct. 24.
This week’s game was more than just football for the Patterson High School junior varsity squad. The junior varsity team spent the week honoring breast cancer awareness, and each player wore a pink band on their wrist with the name of somebody they were honoring and playing for.
“Today was all about our dedication week. All week we talked about football, but we focused on what this is really all about,” said head coach Harley Parson. “I try to teach these guys every year on why we wear pink. We don’t just wear it because professional and college guys wear it. There is a reason, so each kid had someone on their wrist they were playing for.”
The breast cancer awareness week is a cause that coach Parson has instilled on his team each year since returning to Patterson High School with the hope of teaching life lessons along with football. “I try to teach the kids life lessons everyday at practice,” said Parson. “It was all about the big picture. Football is a game. Cancer is life.”
While honoring breast cancer awareness the junior varsity Patterson team played with laser focus in this contest completely dominating every facet of the game on their way to a 49-0 victory over Los Banos.
The offense continues to shine for the junior varsity squad, but this should not overshadow the stout effort the defense put up preserving a shutout the entire duration of the game. Coach Parson explains the difference between his defense and most other junior varsity defenses. “Our defense is all about making reads,” said Parson. “We make reads instead of a normal junior varsity team that just flies to the ball.”
This blowout win will help Patterson’s cause heading toward next week against a tough Pacheco High School opponent. “Pacheco is a big mirror of us,” said Parson. “It’s their athletes against our athletes.”
Erick Torres can be reached at 209-892-6187 ext. 28 or firstname.lastname@example.org.