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HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL: Grandfalls-Royalty comes up short in regional quarterfinals - Odessa American: Sports

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HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL: Grandfalls-Royalty comes up short in regional quarterfinals

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Posted: Friday, November 30, 2018 11:41 pm

STERLING CITY Heading into its Class 1A Division II regional quarterfinal matchup against Jayton, the Grandfalls-Royalty Cowboys were going to need a lot of effort to come out on top.

In a classic six-man shootout, the Jayton Jaybirds prevailed with a 66-52 win over the Cowboys at Eagle Stadium.

“Well, I think it was a good season,” Grandfalls-Royalty head coach Joe Helms said. “I think that we kind of overachieved a little bit.”

The Cowboys got off to a good start early as Oscar Huertas recovered an onside kick to start the game.

Isaiah Vasquez then put Grandfalls on top with a 12-yard touchdown run to make the score 8-0 with 9:41 on the clock.

Jayton (9-3) did not take long to strike back as Pecos Smith tied up the game with a 12-yard touchdown of his own less than two minutes later.

The back-and-forth affair continued as Huertas connected with Jerry Lee Cadena for a 33-yard touchdown pass, giving Cowboys a 14-8 following a missed extra point.

Tye Scogin would get going late in the quarter for the Jaybirds, scoring two touchdown runs of 23 and nine yards to close out the quarter.

Scogin would get another score on the receiving end, catching a 47-yard touchdown pass from Aaron Hernandez to extend the Jaybirds' lead to 30-14 with 4:47 in the second quarter.

He would add one more touchdown run later in the half.

The Cowboys were able to rally back in the first half with two more touchdown passes from Huertas, a 54-yard touchdown pass from Huertas to Abel Rodriguez and a 25-yard pass to De’Shuan Rogers to cut the deficit to six points before the half.

Grandfalls tied the game early in the second half with a 1-yard run from Vazquez. The Cowboys failed to convert the extra point.

Rogers recovered the onside kick for the Cowboys, but they couldn’t muster up any points as they turned over on downs from the Jayton 19 with 3:12 left in the third quarter.

The Jaybirds took advantage in the swing of momentum with Scogin scoring his fourth rushing touchdown on a 57-yard run to put Jayton back on top 44-36 early in the fourth quarter.

Turnovers ended up costing the Cowboys, with an interception turning directly into a Scogin touchdown and a fumble recovered by the Jaybirds with less than a minute remaining.

Grandfalls did try to keep pace with Jayton as Huertas scored on two 1-yard touchdown runs in the fourth quarter but time had run out on the Cowboys season.

After the fumble within the final couple of minutes, Jayton simply played keep away with 58 seconds remaining in the contest to close out the game.

“Honestly, we had our opportunities in this ballgame,” Helms said following the game. “I think that the kids played hard until the end.

Helms added, “We were definitely not picked to be here. In that sense, I think it was a great season.”

>> Follow Peter Dindinger on Twitter @OA_PDindinger

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