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Eagles fall to Rams in overtime, 35-28

By: Matt Long, Sports Editor
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Vista was one play away from winning its second game of the season on Friday night.

That one play, however, is often so difficult to make, which is what makes winning so hard sometimes. Instead of experiencing the thrill of victory, the Eagles suffered the agony of defeat in a 35-28 loss to Casa Roble.

The Eagles battled back from 21-14 and 28-21 deficits to tie the game at 28 with a 22-yard touchdown pass from Grant Patterson to Zach Corbitt with 8:27 to play in the game.

Neither offense could move the ball well for the rest of the game, but when Casa Roble’s punter handled a low snap on fourth down, his knee hit the ground and the play was called dead. Vista caught a big break on the play, getting the ball at the Casa Roble 23-yard line with 21.6 seconds remaining. The Eagles ran three plays and moved the ball to the eight-yard line, setting up a 22-yard field goal attempt by Kameron Kascht. While the Vista fans thought the kick went through the uprights, Kascht’s low liner was wide left and gave the Rams another chance in overtime.

The Rams, who moved the ball more consistently than the Eagles for most of the game, especially on the ground through the running of Devin Carmona, moved the ball from the 25-yard-line down to the one-yard line in only five plays and eventually scored on a one-yard run by quarterback Austin Ehinger.

Vista’s offense didn’t have such luck. Struggling to run the ball all night, the Eagles managed to pick up one first down on a Patterson scramble, but the drive stalled at the 15-yard line and a holding penalty put them in dire straights. Patterson threw an incomplete pass on second down, completed a short pass on third down and was sacked on the game’s final play in a 35-28 overtime loss.

“I know this hurts and it should hurt because you guys put so much time into this,” Vista del Lago coach Mike Struebing told the team after the game. “All you can ask is for an opportunity to win a game and we had that opportunity. We just have to keep working and at some point things will turn in our favor.”

The Eagles took a 7-0 lead early in the game when Patterson hooked up with Mitchell Northcutt for a 71-yard touchdown pass on the game’s second play from scrimmage. Casa Roble tied the game before the Eagles took a 14-7 lead late in the first quarter on an 11-yard Patterson-to-Chad Wilson connection.

The Rams scored a pair of rushing touchdowns in the second quarter to lead 21-14 by halftime.

In the third, Wilson caught his second touchdown pass from Patterson, this time from 33 yards out, to tie the game at 21. The Rams, once again, scored to go up by seven, before the Eagles tied it at 28 with their final score of the game.

“This one stings,” Struebing said.