Woods leads Highlanders past Lakers
Sun News Service
Showing no ill effects of the previous week’s drubbing at the hands of Sparks, the Incline Highlander football team came out with a vengeance Friday night, pounding the visiting North Tahoe Lakers 41-6.
Incline senior running back Alex Woods took advantage of good blocking by his offensive line by running for 340 yards and four touchdowns on 29 carries.
The game didn’t start out well for the Highlanders as North Tahoe took the ball from its own 35-yard line.
After a few quick bursts for short gains by Lakers senior Ernesto Mendoza, junior Joe Erman broke through the Highlander defense for a 43-yard touchdown scamper, giving North Tahoe a 6-0 lead as the kick failed.
Incline answered back quickly as Woods broke off runs of 18 and 8 yards before skirting around the right side for a 28-yard touchdown run. Woods then converted the point after to give Incline a 7-6 lead as the first quarter came to a close.
North Tahoe opened the second quarter going three and out and the Highlanders again had the ball.
Incline was able to push to the Laker 20 before a holding penalty pushed them back 10 yards.
From there, sophomore quarterback Kyle Bahneman hit a streaking Cody Parker down the left sideline, and just like that, Incline was in front 14-6 as the first half came to a close.
On the first play of the second half, Woods again broke free for 41 yards and another Incline touchdown.
It was the same story on the next series as the Lakers, unable to move the ball, punted to Incline and in two plays, Woods gained 27 yards and then 10 more for another score.
Late in the quarter, North Tahoe, finding it hard to gain much ground on the outside, started pounding the middle with a modicum of success. But Incline’s Ryan Bahneman put a stop to the Laker drive when he stripped the ball from Mendoza and the Highlanders recovered.
After two more Woods runs for scores in the fourth quarter, Incline put in its reserves. The second string did more than take up time, as junior running back Javier Pastrana broke off a 26-yard touchdown run of his own.
The Highlander defense also came up big, forcing two turnovers and constantly harassing Laker quarterback Ryan Blount, who was unable to put much together in the way of sustained drives.
North Tahoe plays at Mammoth High this coming Friday at 7 p.m. before traveling to Battle Mountain on Sept. 23 (1:30 p.m.). The Lakers’ first home contest of the year is Sept. 30 when they host Whittell at 1:30 p.m.
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As seniors from North Tahoe collected diplomas this week, a group of Lakers continued another local tradition — capturing first place at the boys’ regional golf championship.