Dust Devils hold off Fallon 14-7
For the Nevada Appeal
DAYTON – The Dust Devils took an early lead and held on to knock off Fallon, 14-7, Friday night at Dust Devil Field in front of a large and vocal crowd.
Dayton controlled the line of scrimmage throughout the first three quarters, frustrating the Green Wave offense, while managing to run up its own time of possession and controlling field position.
Fallon punted four times and turned the ball over on downs once in five offensive series while managing just 24 yards against a fired up Dust Devil defense in the first half. The sole score for the Green Wave came on a 71-yard pitch and run in the fourth quarter.
“You’ve got to be tough and I thought our kids were pretty tough,” said Dayton coach Rick Walker. “They were way aggressive.”
Dayton scored on its first possession after forcing a short Green Wave punt. The Dust Devils took over on their own 46 and ran 12 plays, scoring on a 4-yard pass from senior quarterback Kage Walker to sophomore tight end Cody Yeater who caught the ball on the 4 and spun out of a tackle to find the end zone.
The key to the drive came on fourth-and-20 at the 45-yard line.
Walker faked a punt and ran around the right side for 25 yards, setting Dayton up at the Green Wave 20.
After senior Kyle Onstott was stopped for no gain, Walker gained
11 yards to give Dayton first and goal from the 9. Dayton was up 6-0 after a missed extra point.
The Dust Devils created some excitement when it looked as if Walker found Yeater for another score on a fourth-and-8 from the Green Wave 39-yard-line, but the play was called back for an ineligible receiver downfield. Dayton responded by pinning Fallon deep, downing Walker’s punt at the 3. The Dust Devils would repeat that effort on their next punt, downing the ball at the Green Wave 1.
After forcing another punt, Dayton started its final drive of the first half at the Fallon 47.
Walker completed passes of 24 and 21 yards to senior Dusty Smith, giving Dayton first and goal with time ticking down. A sneak by Walker and two carries by Onstott lost five yards and Dayton called time out with two seconds left in the half.
Walker carried on a sweep to the short side of the field leaping over two defensive players at the goal line, only to be ruled out of bounds before crossing the goal line as the half expired.
Dayton opened the second half with a 15 play, 70 yard drive that ended with Walker finding Yeater in the end zone for a 5-yard score. Houston Berntson caught a Walker pass for the two point conversion to put Dayton ahead 14-0.
Fallon got on the board after a Dayton turnover.
Fallon QB Kolby Mcfarlane hit senior wide out Joseph Floyd in the left flat. Floyd broke to the middle, breaking tackles before turning upfield, racing away from the defense for a 71-yard score.
Walker threw a deep interception on Dayton’s next possession, setting up a final bit of drama.
Fallon’s offense generated some momentum as Mcfarlane and tailback Charlie Heck found some holes and moved their team down the field. Mcfarlane hit Floyd for an apparent touchdown on a second and 19 from the Dayton 23, only to have it called back for an illegal block.
The two combined for a 23-yard completion on the next play to get to the Dayton 11. The Dust Devils responded, chasing Mcfarlane and forcing an intentional grounding call on third down. That left Fallon with one last gasp, fourth and 23 from the Dayton 27. Mcfarlane was flushed from the pocket, his pass attempt fell incomplete, and Dayton had 1:37 of clock left to chew up before ending its home opener with a well earned victory.
“They (Dayton) played well, and that’s what we expected,” said Green Wave coach Brooke Hill. “We just didn’t execute early on. We didn’t execute for three quarters. That’s partially a credit to them. They came out and took some things away, and we have to be able to overcome some of that and be able to make adjustments.”
Coach Walker was impressed with the improvement of his team over last week.
“They were so much better than (against) Truckee. They bounced back. The ‘O’ line really stepped up. I’m really proud of them, I’m really proud of their resiliency,” he said.
Kage Walker ran for 72 yards and passed for 72 yards, two TDs and a
2-point conversion. Yeater had two catches for nine yards and two TDs. Onstott carried 21 times for 55 yards.