The Canyon Spring game at the Valley Viking turned into a closer affair than expected as both defensive teams stepped up to make it a battle. With playoff seeding on the line, the game cam down to the wire before the Pioneers secured a victory.
The Pioneers opened scoring in the second quarter as Deavin Rimmey got loose around the left side to weave his way to a 24-yard score to make the score 7-0 early in the second.
Making the start, junior quarterback Jamal Martin was excellent in the first half and added another score two minutes later as he found Treyveon Evans for a 13-yard touchdown. It was set up by a blocked punt by Davion Collins at the 18-yard line.
The Vikings would get it going with some clutch plays before the close of the second quarter however as the drove the ball downfield. The insertion on Suki Wilks at fullback allowed the big man to get a strike up the middle to close the gap to 14-6 but the missed extra point would hurt the Viking later.
The third quarter was a slow-go for both teams but the Pioneers were able to expand the gap with a 42-yard Rimmey touchdown with 9:15 in the fourth quarter but a missed extra point made the score 20-6.
Just before the end of the game, the Vikings found a light and began to get a bit of momentum. A clutch third down and 13 pass by Garic Wharton to Mitchell Deas allowed the Vikings to get the ball rolling as Roland Hodge would cap the drive with a 14 yard run up the middle to close the gap. The Viking decided to go away from attempting to kick the extra point despite two tries and would walk away down 20-12 with 3:23 left to play.
The Vikings couldn't recover the onsides kick but the defense got it done to give them one more shot on offense. It turned into a strong drive as the Viking closed on the end zone and a possible game tying score with a little over 9 seconds left keyed by an excellent decision by a scrambling Wharton. On fourth down and the final play of the game, Wharton heaved a pass to Royce Finley in the end zone but it was brought down by Canyon Spring Paul Woodward to close the game at 20-12 with 1.6 left on the clock.
Lots of credit to both defensive squads as they did an excellent job all game. On the Canyon Springs side, they made plays in the backfield and swarmed to the ball all day making a big difference in the games outcome.