SFIS Braves Get The “W” in Overtime

Santa Fe Indian School quarterback Devry Vigil scores the winning touchdown in overtime in the Braves’ 20-14 victory over Cuba High School Aug. 22 in Santa Fe. Vigil ran through a big hole created by his offensive line. Indian School spotted the Rams a 14-0 lead in the first quarter before coming back to tie the score 14-14 and send the game into overtime.

By George Morse

SFIS Braves Start Season With Overtime Win Over The Cuba Rams

Santa Fe Indian  School came back from a 14-0 deficit and took a 20-14 overtime victory over Cuba High School in their season-opening game Aug. 22 in Santa Fe. Braves’ quarterback Devry Vigil ran into the end zone through a big hole on Indian School’s second overtime possession for the winning touchdown.

The Braves got off to a shaky start and turned the ball over deep in their own territory in the first quarter. Cuba took advantage of the fumble recovery and scored their first touchdown, adding a two-point conversion for an 8-0 lead. The Rams drove downfield on their  next possession, scoring on a fourth-down pass to Fernando Herrera for a 14-0 lead still in the first quarter.

The Braves got going on their next possession after a great kickoff return by Chance Platero to Cuba’s 45-yard line. SFIS drove downfield, but the drive stalled on the Rams’ 2-yard line. Cuba took over on downs.

Santa Fe Indian School freshman Gabriel Lomayestewa (#83) set up the Braves’ first touchdown with an 18-yard run that gave Indian School first-and-goal. Cuba led 14-6 at halftime.

The Rams were eventually forced to punt and the Braves started from  their 46-yard line. Vigil completed passes to Francisco Pino and Fenyx Whatley. From Cuba’s 24-yard line, freshman Gabriel Lomanestewa darted 18 yards to give the Braves first-and-goal on the Cuba 6-yard line. On third down, Vigil dropped back to pass, spotted an opening and dashed into the end zone for the Braves’ first touchdown with 1:14 left in the first half. The two-point conversion failed and Indian School trailed 14-6 at halftime.

The Braves came  out strong to start the second half. Penalties almost killed their momentum. Pino returned the second half kickoff for an apparent touchdown only to have the play called back on a holding penalty. A long touchdown run by Zeke Martinez was called back because of another holding penalty.

The Braves were not to be denied. Martinez finally scored a touchdown that stood up on a 25-yard run with 2:53 left in the third quarter. On the important two-point conversion, Vigil’s pass into the end zone was batted around until the Brave’s Shaun Riley finally ended up with it. That tied the score 14-14 in the third quarter.

Neither team could mount a scoring drive in the fourth quarter and the game was tied 14-14 at the end of regulation.

It looked like SFIS could put the game away after they intercepted a pass on Cuba’s first overtime possession. The Rams were able to dodge that bullet by intercepting Vigil on the Braves first overtime possession.

SFIS stopped the Rams on Cuba’s second overtime possession, sacking Cuba’s quarterback on fourth down. That set the stage for Vigil’s game-winning touchdown.

The Braves dominated the game after their shaky first quarter.

Getting great protection from his offensive line, Indian School quarterback Devry Vigil launches a pass into the flat. Vigil scored two touchdowns for the Braves.

‘We came out with a really bad case of the jitters,” Indian School Coach Carl Vigil said. “We settled down and started making plays, moving the ball. We locked them down on defense, persevered and showed some heart.”

The Braves face local rival Pojoaque Valley High School Aug. 30 at Pojoaque. Game start time is scheduled for 7:00pm.