Chaps overcome bad start to blast Anna
By Richard Greene
Anna’s Isaac Armijo opened the game with an 86-yard kickoff return that turned into a touchdown two plays later to give his team a 7-0 lead just 20 seconds into Friday’s game.
But it was the result of Armijo’s second attempt on a kickoff that turned the game around. Aubrey’s Clay Kelly tackled Armijo in the end zone for a safety that set the Chaparrals off and running for a 42-13 victory at Chaparral Stadium.
“It was a team effort. A friend and I got him down,” Kelly said.
“When something happens you’ve got to respond. The whole team said this is not going to happen. We’re not going to let a fluke play get us down.”
After allowing the quick score, Aubrey (1-1) scored on its first four possessions — a field goal and three touchdowns — on their way to a 32-7 halftime lead. The Chaparrals’ offense piled up 268 first-half yards and finished with 397 yards.
Aubrey coach Mike Segleski praised his team’s response after allowing the quick score.
“The kids didn’t quit,” Segleski said. “That’s what we preached all week, not to be what history has proven to us. We get down and we let down. That’s what happened last week. We’re trying to overcome that. Even if we get down, find a way to overcome that.”
The safety came after Aubrey kicker Evan Moore hit a 30-yard field goal to close the Chaparrals’ first drive and brought Aubrey within two, 7-5.
“That was the big turning point. As soon as we got the safety, you could see it in their eyes that we were going to win this game,” Segleski said.
Seven plays later, Aubrey took the lead with a 4-yard run by Matt Duncan to cap a seven-play 54-yard drive.
The Aubrey defense kept the momentum with the Chaparrals with RyLee Hellman picking off a Ty Chapman pass on the next series. Cole Cannon cashed the interception into 19-7 Aubrey lead with an 11-yard dash to the end zone.
Hellman’s interception was the first of three turnovers collected by the Chaparrals with all being converted into touchdowns. Cannon returned a pick of Chapman 25 yards in the fourth quarter.
Along with forcing the three turnovers, the Aubrey defense stopped Anna (1-1) on fourth down three times in Chaparrals territory.
With the lead, Aubrey was able to give the ball to their workhorse Daniel Longhenry to chew up yards and time off the clock. Longhenry rushed for 232 yards on 30 carries. He had 134 in the first half.
“The offensive line was killing it,” Longhenry said. “I was extremely proud of them. When they are blocking like that, it makes everyone look good.”
While pacing the Chaparrals’ offense, Longhenry never reached the end zone on the night.
“I’m not worried about the touchdowns. I’m more worried about the yards,” he said.
Aubrey quarterback Mason Robinson added 83 yards through the air, including a 12-yard touchdown to Duncan at the end of the first half.
“That’s what we expect from Daniel. But I thought the paly of Mason Robinson was big. He was able to do enough with the play-action pass to get the safeties off the line of scrimmage.”