Home Sports Local Sports Demon defense saves day against Estancia

Demon defense saves day against Estancia

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Dexter junior wide receiver Jordan Marquez makes a catch in the back of the end zone for the go-ahead score against Estancia on Friday at Demon Field. (Shawn Naranjo Photo)

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DEXTER — The Dexter Demon offensive line was the story of this game as it opened gaping holes for the shorthanded Demons. Dexter played without the other half of their rushing duo in Gustavo Macias.

By the end of the night, a spent running back Nick Cobos made a name for himself. All the junior tailback did was run for 215 yards on 40 carries in a Dexter 20-18 victory over Estancia at Demon Field Friday night.

The offensive line played with a fury and intensity for four quarters and carried Dexter to victory. The Demon O-line opened up rushing holes for the Dexter running backs to the tune of 350 yards rushing, none more important than when they held Estancia on the goal line to force a stop on fourth-and-goal at the 1-yard line. The Demons held and took over on downs.

“We got whooped on the line of scrimmage,” said Estancia coach Stewart Burnett. “If we wanted to win tonight, we had to control the line of scrimmage. We didn’t do that. Dexter kept us from running the ball and ran on us. If you can’t win at the line battle, you can’t win the game of football. They did nothing to surprise us. They did exactly what we saw on film against Portales last week.”

Dexter (4-2) ran four offensive plays all game and the Bears could not stop them or Cobos. Cobos would take the ball and run it in between the tackles and if the middle of the line was clogged up, he would repeatedly bounce it outside for big gains.

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“We ran four plays all night,” said Dexter quarterback Jaren Amaro. “We ran option left; right, triple, and counter trey on the inside veer. I read the three and five, easy offense to read. If the D-lineman comes down, it determines what I do. We needed this win.”

In a game that had constant drizzle of rain, Cobos was a tsunami on the Bear defense breaking off chunks of yards. He had runs of 25, 35, 40 and 45 yards throughout the game.

“We were running a lot of counters out of the wing,” Cobos said. “I give credit to my lineman. I knew that Estancia’s corners were slow, so I tried to press the outside. We knew they were getting tired, so we kept pressing them.”

When Dexter had to have a score, they drove the ball to the 6-yard line and instead of running the ball, quarterback Amaro faked a counter trap play that had been effective all night and pulled the ball down and threw it into the back of the end zone to Jordan Marquez to put the Demons up 18-12 with 10:19 in the fourth quarter.

“It was just a lead right pass on the TD,” said Demon tight end Jordan Marquez. “Whenever I was going out I saw the safety drop down, and soon as I cut, I saw (Amaro) throw the ball. I just caught it.”

Every time the Demons would score, Estancia would come back on the very next possession and score to tie the game. Dexter coach Kevin Graham called a timeout and decided to go for two points.

Instead of running the ball, Amaro rolled to his right looking for a receiver in the back of the end zone; his second option was not open. He found Cobos running a quick slant across the linebacker’s face; Amaro saw him and threw it. Cobos was hit as he crossed the goal for a two-point conversion to give the Demons a 20-18 lead with 10:19 to play.

“On the two-point play, the comeback pass wasn’t there,” Amaro said, “the out wasn’t there, and I hit Nick (Cobos) on a check down; he was running a slant. I saw him and threw it. Cobos played lights out.”

Estancia (2-4) drove the ball with 5:10 left to play. They ended up driving the ball to the Demons 10-yard line. Errors and two penalties forced them to turn the ball over on downs.

Dexter had to make one more stop with 11 seconds left, and a running back broke through the line and the only thing between a touchdown for the Bears was Dexter’s Amaro. Amaro hit the running back with such force, he forced a fumble that Dexter recovered with 7 seconds left.

“I’m excited to come out of here on the right side of the scoreboard,” Graham said. “It was a heck of a football game and a competitive game until the end. They are so well-coached.”

Dexter opened the game scoring on a ball controlled drive, when Amaro dashed in from the 6-yard line on a quarterback option play and kept the ball diving into the end zone to put the Demons up 6-0. The PAT was no good.

Graham made a surprise move and had his team do an onside kick. Dexter caught the Bears offguard and recovered. They turned the ball over on downs, but it showed the desperation the Demons played throughout the game.

Dexter has a bye next week.