All 5-foot-11 and reach of Anthony Trujillo’s outstretched arm enabled the Desert View linebacker to block a potential game-winning 37-yard field goal try for Rincon/University with no time showing on Thursday night.
On the Rangers’ sideline, a shout of, “Hey, we fought!” came from one of the consoling players after the 27-26 loss at Rincon/University.
Desert View fought back with the last telling blow, a 3-yard TD run by Carlos Alvarez with 1:08 left in regulation after a 40-yard burst by Serge Gboweiah took the Jaguars to the Rincon/University 10 two plays previously.
That “Dynamic Duo,” as Alvarez calls them, combined for 322 yards on 29 carries — 204 yards on 16 attempts for Gboweiah and 118 yards on 13 rushes for Alvarez.
In a battle of the win-starved programs, Desert View emerged with the victory, snapping a two-game losing spell, including a 44-point defeat at Ironwood Ridge last week.
The Jaguars and Rangers are each 3-3 overall with Desert View ahead in the 5A Sonoran standings with the victory to open the region schedule.
Another monster game for Desert View sophomore RB Serge Gboweiah with 204 yards on 16 carries in the Jaguars’ 27-26 thrilling win. pic.twitter.com/2nEtW0NLYY
Serge Gboweiah with the 41-yard run to the Rincon 10. Desert View trails 26-21 with 1:02 left. pic.twitter.com/3u2KQ1iH90
Significant part of Desert View’s dynamic duo in the backfield with Serge Gboweiah — Carlos Alvarez with 118 yards on 13 rushes, including the go-ahead TD with 1 minute left in the 27-26 win over Rincon/UHS. pic.twitter.com/et3Fh7iN0y
With four regular-season games to play, the three wins for Desert View coach Robert Bonillas and his team match the win total of each of the last couple of seasons with the Jaguars finished 3-7.
Rincon/University’s three wins is the most at this point of the season since 2012. The Rangers appear to be on the rise under second-year coach Mike Strack, the grandson of former Arizona athletic director Dave Strack, who has enlisted the help of former coach Nate Gahn as one of his assistants. Gahn coached Rincon/University to a 6-4 record in 2012 before leaving to be an assistant coach at Pima College.
The Rangers were so close to another victory when senior quarterback Preston Silvas — one of Southern Arizona’s best in terms of his production and determination — had three pass completions to take the Rangers from their own 40 to the Desert View 30 to set up the game-winning field goal try.
Trujillo’s block thwarted the attempt, pumping life back into the Jaguars and making the Rangers hungrier to get a fourth win in a season for only the second time in the last 12 years.
Desert View travels to Cholla next Friday while Rincon visits Flowing Wells.
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ALLSPORTSTUCSON.com publisher, writer and editor Javier Morales is a former Arizona Press Club award winner. He is a former Arizona Daily Star beat reporter for the Arizona basketball team, including when the Wildcats won the 1996-97 NCAA title. He has also written articles for CollegeAD.com, Bleacher Report, Lindy’s Sports, TucsonCitizen.com, The Arizona Republic, Sporting News and Baseball America, among many other publications. He has also authored the book “The Highest Form of Living”, which is available at Amazon.