The Memorial defeated the Channelview Falcons by a 38-26 score on Homecoming 202 at Veterans Stadium last night.
The win sets the Mavs record at 5-2, 2-1 in district. The Mavs return next Friday vs the Dobie Longhorns.
If Pasadena Memorial’s football program is to end back-to-back seasons of losing records and back-to-back campaigns of missing the state playoff fun, the Mavs need a strong November.
That objective got going in the right direction this past Thursday night when the team, facing Channelview for the first time in seven years, defeated the Falcons 38-26 at Veterans Memorial Stadium.
It was unquestionably the team’s finest win of the year, rushing back from a 26-17 second-half deficit by scoring 21 fourth-quarter points to get the triumph.
Quarterback Luke Giron sparked the come-from-behind win with a perfect 5-of-5 effort in the passing department that resulted in one touchdown and 87 yards. He also rushed for a second score and scored an easy two-point conversion.
Add it all up and the Mavs are now 3-2 overall against Channelview, while improving their district record to 2-1 and sole possession of third place at the midway mark.
Channelview, trying to get caught up with the rest of the district after quarantining for two weeks last month. fell to 0-2. It has raised the hopes that perhaps the Pasadena ISD teams can bag the super rare achievement of landing three teams in the state playoffs.
The Falcons, a playoff team just two seasons ago, won’t be going to the postseason if they don’t fix their leaky fourth quarter problems. So far in those two contests, they’ve been outscored 31-6 over the final 12 minutes.
Memorial had a 17-14 lead when Kolbey Taylor motored 67 yards on the first play of the second half. But Channelview reserved its opening two possessions to snare that nine-point advantage and the momentum.
Demetrius Charles, a Second Team All-District quarterback in the old District 21-6A as a sophomore, scored on runs of 14 and 73 yards to finish off those possessions. Fortunately for Memorial, the PATs on both went awry or the Mavs’ deficit would have been in double digits.
“We talk about peaks and valleys all the time. In life, you may not always have a great day. But you gotta get out of bed and go to work to support your family. Our kids showed up tonight. We didn’t get down, we didn’t give up. Our kids just kept battling and it’s really cool to see when they come together as a family like that,” Mavs head coach Jamie Crocker said.
With the clock no longer a friend for Memorial, Giron had Memorial chew up 51 yards in only four plays, thanks to completed passes of eight, six and the big one, a 30-yarder to Quincy Swaim for the score.
The defense did its job by getting the ball right back to the offense. Then helped by two 15-yard penalties against the Falcons, including one on the punt, Memorial was 33 yards shy of a go-ahead score.
Twenty-three of those yards came on Giron’s third completion, a 23-yarder to Keyshawn Oliver and two plays later, Giron was scoring with 7:25 remaining in the game.
That’s when on the ensuing PAT, Giron fooled the entire stadium, scooting for the right pylon and scoring standing up for a 31-26 lead.
“They blocked one so I knew they were going to bring pressure. So I took it upon myself to go score it. I read the defense and took advantage of it,” Giron said.
“We work on it all the time. If you have a fumbled snap and the pressure’s coming then if he has the time to pull it off, go for it. He did a great job. It was a very heady play. It put us ahead to stay. It’s just like you draw it up, right?” Crocker said.
The third touchdown of the final quarter was crucial, too. It put the Mavs up by more than one possession. Again, half the field chewed up in short order, aided by a 20-yard pass to Christian Vega and a half-the-distance penalty of nine yards landed the team on the nine. Two plays later, Vega was in with a six-yard run at the 3:41 mark.
Among the defensive stars down the stretch was Giovanni Zaso, who broke up a fourth-down pass and produced an eight-yard sack of Charles.
GAME NOTES: Memorial sophomore linebacker Everett Epps went down with an injury just before halftime. He left the stadium at intermission with what appeared to be a shoulder or arm issue….The victory was Memorial’s first district win over a non-Pasadena ISD opponent since knocking off La Porte 35-17 on Nov. 3, 2017. …For all-time November regular season games, it was just Memorial’s seventh victory as the Mavs improve to 7-15. Memorial didn’t win its first November game until the 2010 season. So after once owning an 0-8 November record, they’re 7-7 since. Memorial now has an overall record of 85-91-1.