Truckee JV Pop Warner football team improves to 1-1 with win over Sparks
Special to the Sun
TRUCKEE, Calif. — After Truckee’s Junior Varsity Pop Warner team dropped their opener to the Reno Miners 26-22 in Reno, the young team topped the Sparks Wolfpack, 36-24, on Sept. 17 at Truckee’s Riverview Sports Park to capture their first win.
The team, composed of boys aged 10 to 13 and weighing between 90 and 155 pounds, enjoyed offensive success throughout the game and defensive success in the second half.
The Wolverines came out slinging the ball and Truckee quarterback Tavin Hamilton connected with running back Carsen Decker on the first two offensive plays of the game.
The first strike went for 60 yards and set up Truckee at Spark’s 4-yard line. The next play, Hamilton hit Decker on an out route for the score before a full minute had ticked off the clock.
Two possessions later, and still in the first quarter, Hamilton connected with one of his other favorite targets, Jackson Ellermeyer. The tight end pulled down a 15-yard pass and streaked down the middle of the field the remaining 73 yards for an 88-yard touchdown and a 12-0 Truckee lead.
The Wolfpack answered the Wolverines quick start with two quick scores of their own and enjoyed a 14-12 lead as a result of a successful two-point conversion on one of their two ground attack touchdowns, before Hamilton and Decker connected for a second time.
Decker’s second touchdown catch came when Hamilton hit him seven yards past the line of scrimmage on another out route that Decker turned up field near the sideline and ended in the end zone 42 yards later.
After Decker’s second touchdown and Hamilton’s third, kicker Jairo Zarate converted a point-after — worth two points in Pop Warner — to give the Wolverines a 18-14 lead with 4:30 left in the half.
Again, the Wolfpack answered with a short touchdown pass in the back of the end zone to give them a 20-18 lead at halftime.
The second half echoed the first, with the Wolverines scoring first and the Wolfpack responding with a score of their own.
Truckee running back Codee Decker jetted around the left side for a 10-yard touchdown and gave the Wolverines a brief 26-20 lead in the third quarter before Sparks tied the game 26-26 with a touchdown pass to the right side of the field.
With 2:39 left in the third quarter, the Wolfpack ran out of answers to Truckee’s scoring. Ellermeyer pulled down a Hamilton bomb over the top of two Sparks defenders and ran in for the 41-yard score.
Truckee’s Zarate kicked the point-after successfully for the 34-26 lead that held up until the end as the Wolverines made successful defensive adjustments that thwarted the Wolfpack offense to just one three-and-out possession in the fourth quarter.
Truckee amassed a total of 419 yards on the day, and the defense dug in and allowed only 87 yards in the second half after allowing 204 in the first half.
Hamilton led Truckee in passing and completed eight of his 18 attempts for 272 yards with four touchdowns and one interception. Ellermeyer finished with 167 yards receiving and two touchdowns on four catches. Carsen Decker pulled down four passes for 110 yards and two touchdowns.
Codee Decker led the Wolverines in rushing with 110 yards off 17 carries. Jameson Hogarth followed Decker with 32 yards on five carries.
Defensively, the Wolverines were led in tackles by linebackers Codee Decker and Garrett Kirk. Kirk, coming off of an ankle injury, did not play in Truckee’s first game. He also led the team with two fumble recoveries.
Adding to the defensive effort were Ellermeyer with 14 tackles, followed by Hogarth (11), Micah Ivens (10), Quincy Wood (8) and Carsen Decker (7).