Warriors Rely on Second Half Surge for Win

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Sivert Svarstad, number 88 for the Winters High School varsity football team, goes after the quarterback in a recent home game. Photo by Ken Stewart.

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In a must win situation and a Sacramento Valley League game, the undefeated Winters High School varsity football team had to fight for a victory last Friday night. On Friday, Oct. 19, the Warriors traveled to Arbuckle to take on the 2-2 Pierce Bears and found themselves in a 7-7 tie at the half. “We were challenged for sure,” said coach Daniel Ward. “We struggled a bit but we fought through it and I think it was good for us. They were a very physical team. It was the first time we were really tested since the Rio Vista game on Sept. 7, so I think it will make us better.” After making some halftime adjustments and taking advantage of some Pierce turnovers the Warriors rolled the Bears in the second half putting 24 unanswered points on the board for a 31-7 victory. Winters scored three touchdowns in the third quarter and topped it off with a 23-yard field goal from Ivan Santana in the fourth. Santana broke the school record of PAT kicks made in a season of 37 set by Jozef Struhar in 2013 by kicking his 39th PAT. More impressive is Santana is 39 of 39 in just eight games. “He has been incredible all season,” Ward said. As he has done all season long quarterback Daniel Carrion led the Warriors on the ground and in the air. Carrion completed 10 of 16 passes for 137 yards and a touchdown and carried the ball eight times for 182 yards and two touchdowns. Carrion leads the entire Northern Section in total yards with 2346 averaging 293.3 yards per game. He is ranked sixth in the section and first in league in passing with 1161 yards, ranked third in the section and first in league in rushing with 1185 yards, has rushed for 14 touchdowns and has passed for 17 touchdowns. The 17 touchdown passes are second in the section and first in league and are only two shy of the school record held by coach Ward but his most impressive statistical stat is 0. Zero interceptions out of 100 attempts on the season making his pass rating of 139.2 by far the best in the section. If the Warriors make it to the section finals, Carrion is on pace to break the school record in both passing and rushing. “He has been amazing,” Ward said. “All season long he has led this team and has made everybody around him better.” Also stepping up and carrying the load was Dalton Lowrie. Lowrie carried the ball 20 times for 83 hard fought yards and a touchdown. Anthony Jimenez added 50 yards on six carries. In the air Lowrie caught five passes for 36 yards. Jimenez had three receptions for 49 yards. Atlas Martinez had two receptions for 37 yards and a touchdown, while Adrian Cruz had one catch for 15 yards. Santana went also went 4 for 4 in PATs for the Warriors. On the defensive side of the ball Gary Molina led the Warriors with six tackles. Carson Lowrie had five tackles in his varsity debut. Sivert Svarstad had five tackles, a sack and a fumble recovery. Martinez, Dalton Lowrie, Cooper Andres and Avondre Coleman-Tucker each had four tackles. Martinez had a caused fumble, Dalton Lowrie had two caused fumbles and a fumble recovery, Jimenez had a fumble recovery and Coleman-Tucker had a fumble recovery. Aaron Mendoza had three tackles and an interception. Ian Trojanowski had three tackles. Jordan Cobaugh and Cruz each had two tackles, while Andrew Del Rio, Kirby Borges and Christian Acevas each had one. The Warriors will take their undefeated 8-0 record to Durham this Friday for the Sacramento Valley League Championship game. The 7-1, 4-0 Trojans have just as much to lose and just as much to gain as the Warriors as they both compete for not just the league title but for playoff rankings and home field advantage as well.]]>

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