Third generation Bel Air junior running back Zach Martinez led a relentless Highlander ground attack as the Bel Air Highlanders (4-0) overwhelmed the Clint Lions (1-3) before a capacity homecoming crowd at Highlander Stadium Bob Savage Field.
The Lions had a ground attack of their own, controlling the entire first quarter with a disciplined drive that ended with senior fullback Diego Cordoba on a 3 yard touchdown run, giving the Lions an early 7-0 lead with 3:44 remaining in the first quarter.
That was the first and last touchdown for Clint.
The Highlander defense created opportunities for Martinez and Company in the second quarter, forcing Lion turnovers deep in their own territory. The Lions threatened on a fake punt and 29-yard run by senior punter Armando Aguirre; however, his heroics were wiped out with a yellow flag. Senior Clint fullback Alexis Pallarez gashed Bel Air with an amazing 44 yard run deep into Highlander territory; his efforts were for naught as the Lions would fumble on the next play. Costly penalties and turnovers would plague the Lion offense throughout the contest.
Martinez scored the first of his three touchdowns on an 18 yard scramble with 7:17 remaining in the first half. Moments later, the Lions would fumble again, giving the Highlanders excellent field position. Junior wide receiver Christopher Davis wasted little time finding the end zone at the 6:57 mark on a 9 yard touchdown run. Bel Air took a 14-7 lead into the locker room at halftime.
The third quarter belonged to Zach Martinez and the Highlanders. Martinez scored on a 9 yard run with 9:48 remaining. A field goal and touchdown by junior wideout Oscar Martinez gave the Highlanders a comfortable 31-7 lead as time expired in the third quarter.
Zach Martinez would drive the final nail in the Lions’ coffin on an 11-yard scramble with 9:48 remaining in the contest.
Martinez led all running backs with 23 carries for 135 yards. Junior Highlander quarterback Noah Moreno completed 13 of 32 passes for 130 yards. Alexis Pallarez led the Lions with 10 carries for 103 yards. The Highlander defense held the Lions to fewer than 200 yards of total offense.
Story by Ryan Adams