Tiger turnovers prove costly in loss to Skyview
The first play of Friday night's Mountain Home-Skyview football game at Tiger Field seemed to set the tone for a Murphy's Law type of game for Mountain Home. The Tigers ended up losing to the Hawks, 7-46.
On the very first play of the game, Skyview's Kyle Cothern took the kickoff and ran down the sidelines 92 yards for a touchdown. The Hawks went up 7-0 with Tim Mohike's point-after try just 15 seconds into the ball game.
On Mountain Home's first possession, the Tigers fumbled the ball and Skyview recovered at the Mountain Home 30-yard line.
Skyview managed to move the ball down to the Tiger three-yard line before the defense stopped the drive, forcing the Hawks to try a field goal. Tim Mohike booted it through the uprights from 21 yards out to give Skyview a 10-0 lead with 5:48 left in the first quarter.
But Murphy, as in "Murphy's Law," was just getting warmed up.
Mountain Home's next drive started well enough, with a 19-yard pass from Ben Ceccarelli to Pete Ramadan out to the Tiger 42. Two Ceccarelli runs sat up a third down and four on the Tiger 49.
Then, Taylor Chapman intercepted a pass and ran 57 yards for a touchdown. The Mohike PAT made it 17-0, Skyview, with 3:48 left in the quarter.
Just 26 seconds later, Skyview scored again, this time on a 45-yard interception return for a touchdown by Gunnar Salois, and the Hawks led 24-0 after a quarter.
Skyview had one scoring drive in the second quarter, going 69 yards on 10 plays with Anthony Marin connecting with Lane Robbins on a 23-yard pass. Joe Miller ran in the two-point conversion to put the Hawks up 32-0 with 3:19 left in the half.
"Murphy" called it a night on Mountain Home's next possession when Kyle Cothern scooped up a Mountain Home fumble and ran it 37 yards for a touchdown, sending the Hawks into the locker room at halftime with a commanding 39-0 lead.
The second half turned into a defensive struggle, with neither team scoring in the third quarter.
Mountain Home put together an 11-play, 58-yard scoring drive in the fourth quarter capped by Ben Ceccarelli passing to Levi Abrahamson in the corner of the end zone. Levi made a great one-handed catch for the score. Jack Richelieu hit the PAT to make it 39-7 with 7:15 left to go in the ball game.
The Tigers stopped Skyview on its next possession and moved the ball down the field to the Hawks' 31-yard line before turning the ball back over on downs.
Skyview then moved the ball down the field, Austin Ball taking it the final nine yards for the score, with 19.5 seconds left to make it a 46-7 final.
Mountain Home Tiger head football coach Aaron Rodney, in comments from the post-game show party, lamented the poor start.
"One of these days we'll put together a complete game. Once again, we started slow. At some point, we've got to step up and start making plays and get off to a faster start."
Rodney was quick to praise his defense for their effort, holding the Hawks to just 125 yards rushing and 75 passing for 200 total yards.
"The defense played great. We did a pretty good job defensively. Special teams and our offense were where the problems were. We've got to go back to the drawing board and get some things cleaned up. We've got to get more production out of our offense."
The Tigers' rushing game was anemic, as the Mountain Home rushed 32 times for just seven net yards.
Tanner Sessions carried the ball five times for 23 yards. Ryan Eckstrom rushed 11 times for seven yards, Jared Cantrell had one rush for two yards, Malcolm Freer rushed once for minus seven yards, and Ben Ceccarelli had 14 rushes for minus 18 yards.
Ceccarelli completed 11 of 26 passes for 103 yards and a touchdown.
Michael Daniels had three catches for 38 yards, Tyler Elliott caught four passes for 21 yards, Pete Ramadan had one catch for 20 yards, Levi Abrahamson had two catches for 17 yards and a score, and Ryan Eckstrom caught one pass for seven yards.
Defensively, Jose Rodriguez led the Tigers in tackles, getting in on eight, with two quarterback sacks and a tackle for loss. Tanner Sessions had seven tackles, which included a quarterback sack and a tackle for loss. Jared Cantrell had six tackles, including a tackle for loss. Brandon Reyes had four tackles, Ryan Eckstrom, three, Danny Brescia, Tyler Elliott and Daniel Welle had two each, and Solomon Chung He, Christian Reidel, Marcos Gutierrez, Austin Lucas and Preston Hyde each had one.
The Tigers host the Caldwell Cougars for homecoming Friday night.
"They've struggled a bit, too," said Coach Rodney of the Cougars.
"It should be a good matchup. They do some good things and they play physical and they play hard. I'm really looking forward to the game and hopefully we can put together four quarters of football."
Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. Friday night at Tiger Field, with the crowning of the homecoming queen at halftime.