Defense a turnover machine as the Harvesters rout Big Spring 58-7

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The Pampa Harvesters (6-1) hosted Big Spring (5-2) in their final pre-district game on Friday evening.

The defense created several turnovers and smothered the Steers offense, allowing the Harvesters offense to overcome a slow start and take care of business in the 58-7 win.

“Our defense did a great job at creating takeaways,” Head Coach Cody Robinson said. “The game of football is all about the football. Anytime you can be opportunistic on defense, that’s a great job. We’ve developed this mentality to do that.

“Early in the first quarter and at halftime, that’s not our standard. We want to be perfect, we weren’t happy with that from coaches, to players. From me, all the way down our roster. I had some changes in the first quarter, put some points on the board but kept stumbling. But we battled our way back and you’re never going to play a perfect game of football.

The Pampa Harvesters first scoring drive came in the back part of the first quarter with the drive starting at the 45-yard line of Big Spring. Senior back Cornelius “Peanut” Landers picked up 10 yards and a fresh set of downs. Landers picked up another nine the next play, but the drive stalled at the Big Spring 20-yard line. Senior kicker Erick Hernandez hit a 37-yard field goal to put Pampa on the board first at 3-0.

After senior defensive back Cason Floyd picked off the Big Spring pass near midfield on the ensuing drive, senior quarterback Sam Anguiano hit senior back Jordan Lacy on a 47-yard catch and run for the touchdown. At the 1:48 mark of the first quarter, Pampa led 10-0.

The Harvesters next scoring drive came in the middle of the second quarter as the Harvesters went to work from the Pampa 38-yard line with 7:47 left in the half. Landers sparked the drive with a 19-yard carry to move Pampa past midfield at the Big Spring 43-yard line. A penalty moved Pampa to the 33-yard line. Three plays later, Anguiano found senior wideout Jessie Alvidrez for 29 yards and put Pampa within striking distance. Two plays later, Landers barreled through for the touchdown, extending Pampa’s lead to 16-7.

The Harvesters final scoring drive of the first half was started with Anguiano on a pair of completions to Landers for a fresh set of downs. Two plays later, Anguiano scrambled for 20 yards and Pampa was at the Big Spring 30-yard line. Three plays later, Anguiano found senior receiver Hunter Dyer on a 16-yard completion for the Pampa first down inside the Big Spring 20. Two plays later, Anguiano found Alvidrez and Pampa had a 23-7 lead at half.

“Jessie Alvidrez is an outstanding young man, and we’ve got a lot of them on our team,” Robinson said. “Jessie is one of our leadership council guys. He’s got a bright future ahead of him. He’s a versatile athlete and we’ve got some guys we can move around and do some things with and Jessie is very important to our offense because he can do so many things and create so many looks. He is a big kid who can put his hand in the ground and block, or you can split him out wide and make him vertical. He’s a good kid, he just needs to keep competing and squeeze every ounce out of his senior year he possibly can.”

The Harvesters first drive of the second half started with a pair of passes to senior back Jordan Lacy to move the chains pass midfield to the Big Spring 41-yard line. The very next play, Landers scored a touchdown with a 41-yard dash to the end zone. After the Hernandez extra point, Pampa led 30-7.

The Harvesters next drive started with a seven-yard carry from Landers followed by another run by Lacy to moved the chains. Two plays later Anguiano had a 35-yard keeper to move Pampa deep into enemy territory. Three plays later, the Harvesters ran a reverse to Lacy who took it 28 yards for the touchdown. At the 3:35 mark, Pampa led 37-7.

After forcing a turnover on downs, Pampa took over at the Pampa 45-yard line with 1:49 left in the third quarter. While the Big Spring defense started to show some life, Landers took the drive over with a 72-yard touchdown run. The Hernandez extra point gave Pampa the staggering 44-7 lead with 23 seconds left in the half.

The Harvesters continued to impose their will as junior linebacker Austin Bruce intercepted the Big Spring pass. The ensuing drive for Pampa was junior quarterback Miguel Campos found Dyer on the sideline, who took it 52 yards for the touchdown. Pampa’s lead was 51-7.

The Harvesters defense came up big on the next Big Spring drive as Hernandez intercepted the pass and returned it to the Big Spring 3-yard line. Two plays later, Alvidrez caught the touchdown pass and Pampa led 58-7.

The Harvesters are on the bye week next Friday, but Robinson stressed that the team was “open, not off.”

“Your biggest opponent is always yourself,” Robinson said. “We’ve got to continue to work on ourselves and put our football team under a microscope. We’ve got to look at ways that we can improve and we want to balance that with some rest. We’re going to go out and serve our community, roll our sleeves up and get dirty.

“Going into the bye week we have a lot of work to do. That’s exciting to me. Just go and watch film, say who our best 11 kids are for each situation. That’s what we’re going to do on all three sides of the ball.”

Unofficial stats

Sam Anguiano went 10-20 for 124 yards and two touchdowns; Miguel Campos went 2-3 for 55 yards and two touchdowns.

Cornelius “Peanut” Landers had 174 yards and three touchdowns on 18 carries; Jordan Lacy had two carries for 25 yards and a touchdown; Sam Anguiano had three carries for 39 yards.

Jordan Lacy had five catches for 60 yards and a touchdown; Jessie Alvidrez had three catches for 41 yards and two touchdowns; Hunter Dyer had two catches for 64 yards and a touchdown.

Austin Bruce, Cason Floyd and Erick Hernandez each had interceptions.

Erick Hernandez went 1-2 in field goals, making one from 37 yards.

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