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Friday Night Lights: Week 1

Eight local teams kick off a brand new season on the gridiron

YUMA, Ariz., (KYMA, KECY) - There was no shortage of action in between the lines this week, featuring many teams from the desert southwest in week one of the 2022 season under the lights.

Although there was a shortage of lights in one game.

From Yuma to the Imperial Valley, we got a small dose of what's to come this season - from high scoring to late comeback victories.

BRAWLEY - 27 SCRIPPS RANCH - 20

The Wildcats came into the new year off of another Imperial Valley League title, but it would be a tough task in week one taking on the defending 2A state champions from Scripps Ranch.

After a three-and-out on their opening drive and then allowing a drive and score from the Falcons on a touchdown pass from Jax Leatherwood to Stephen Bosquet, the Wildcats got a spark from special teams.

Ruben Abarca turned on the jets and returned the ensuing kick-off into Falcons territory, setting up their second drive in good field position.

A connection between senior quarterback Ethan Gutierrez to Robert Platt Jr., the Wildcats were set up and that's when they pounded the rock with Tanner Carranza who later scored to tie the game. The extra point gave them a 7-6 lead and carried them to a 27-20 win.

SOUTHWEST - 13 HOLTVILLE - 53

This was a battle of air raid versus ground and pound.

The Southwest Eagles came in looking to rewrite their story after a tough year in 2021, using their junior quarterback Logan Jungers and a platoon of talented receivers.

But that would not matter, struggling in the trenches and stopping the rushing attack from the Holtville Vikings - sticking to the part of the game that got them to the post season last year.

SAN DIEGO - 28 VINCENT MEMORIAL - 29

The first big comeback of the year goes to the Scots of Vincent Memorial.

The Scots spread offense led by their field general, Jacobo Elias, struggled in the first half and into the third quarter - allowing too much pressure on Elias to do what he does best and move around and sling the rock to his talented group of skill players.

Trailing 21-6 halfway through the third, the Scots got a defensive stop and followed that up with a big drive to cut the lead down - eventually scoring twice more and completing the comeback.

CALEXICO - 7 PALO VERDE - 7 (TO BE CONTINUED)

Out went the lights in this one.

Rounding out the Imperial Valley was the season opener in the desert southwest - kicking off on Thursday night from Blythe, California.

A game between the Bulldogs on the road coming off of their most successful season in modern history, taking on the defending CIF Division 5 champions of Palo Verde - but it took a dramatic turn.

Just two minutes into the second half, a storm swept through the area and knocked the power out at the stadium, causing the game to be put on hold as players, coaches and fans made their way home.

But before that, it was a deadlock.

Both sides were solid on the defensive end, forcing one another to punt and come up with big fourth down stops.

Eventually it was Calexico who broke the seal on a screen pass from quarterback, David Esquer, to Andres Ramirez who took it 30 yards to the house to release the scoreless tie in the second quarter.

Palo Verde would answer just after the halftime break before the lights went out.

The game will be continued on Saturday night at 6pm at Imperial High School.

DYSART - 21 YUMA - 18

The Criminals entered the 2022 season looking for its first winning season in a decade.

It got off to a hot start with a touchdown run from Jesus Villapudua and then a pitch and catch from Reggie Antone to Giovanni Robinson, taking a 12-0 lead.

But like last season in most cases, the wheels fell off in the second half.

The Crims would surrender the lead and take the tough 21-18 loss to open at home.

OUT OF TOWN SCORES:

CENTRAL - 48 MOUNT CARMEL - 20

CALIPATRIA at DESERT CHRISTIAN ACADEMY - (Saturday night)

Article Topic Follows: Friday Night Lights
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Cole Johnson

Cole Johnson is the anchor for Sunrise.

Contact Cole at cole.johnson@kecytv.com.

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Luis Lopez

Luis Lopez covers sports and weather for KYMA.

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Scott Gross

Scott Gross joins the KYMA team as the CBS 13 sports director and weather forecaster.

Contact him at scott.gross@kecytv.com.

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