By CHRIS YEARICK
• Daily Leader
KISMET — In another game plagued by turnovers, the Southwestern Heights Mustangs were bucked 43-20 by the Lakin Broncs in their final regular season game on Thursday night.
Looking like a battle of defenses in the first quarter, both teams first possessions went three and out with little movement of the ball. Looking like they would go up on the scoreboard first, Lakin’s first touchdown was returned to the 39-yard line for a holding penalty. On an important 3rd and 8, the Mustang defense tackled the Broncs for a loss ultimately forcing a Lakin punt.
It was SWH who would go up on the scoreboard first after some intense movement of the ball. Starting at their own 26-yard line, the Mustangs seemed stifled by a penalty that took them to a 3rd and 17 at their own 13-yard line. Then a catch and amazing 27-yard gain by sophomore Rogelio Martinez sparked the Mustang offense. Capitalizing with the momentum, senior Taylor Collins reception and fight to get into the end zone profited the Mustangs their first touchdown at 9.1 seconds left in the first quarter. Without the two-point conversion, the score was 6-0 at the end of the first.
Lakin answered in the second quarter with a drive of their own into Mustang territory at the 3-yard line. At 9:33, the Broncs scored a touchdown and with the two-point conversion, they went on top 8-6.
The Mustangs offense was again on fire with three completed passes for first downs. Setting up on the Broncs 22-yard line, the Mustangs would face an ugly interception. In only one striking play, the Broncs carried the ball 93-yards for a touchdown at 8:16. With another two-point try, the Broncs lead increased 16-6.
It was a stinging drive for the Mustangs when they again moved the ball into Lakin territory. With another same song second verse Lakin interception, the Broncs started their drive from their own 32-yard line. The Mustang defense however made a stonewall-like stand and forced a turnover on downs at the Broncs 41-yard line.
The third verse of the song was played when the Mustangs again marched into scoring range with incredible pass play. However the Lakin Broncs played their own third verse with their third interception of the ballgame. Capitializing, the Broncs took the ball an unrelenting 94 yards for another touchdown taking the score at the half to 23-6.
The Broncs came out bucking in the second half and at 11:06 completed a 76-yard touchdown pass to take the score to 30-6. On the Mustangs first possession of the second half, the fourth biting interception would squelch their drive. The Broncs capitalized with the advantage and took the ball in for another touchdown at 9:36 in the third. With the extra point, the Broncs lead increased to 37-6.
Facing another defeating setback, the Mustangs lost their next possession immediately with a fumble when returning the kick. The Mustang defense hammered the Broncs next possession and forced a fumble to give the ball back to the Mustangs. Forced to punt, the Mustangs went three and out.
With good field position, the Broncs would again capitalize with another touchdown taking their lead to 43-6. However, the Mustangs answered with a touchdown of their own at the end of the third quarter. Without the two-point conversion, the quarter ended 43-12.
In the fourth quarter, another merciless drive by the Mustang offense profited a score at 7:37 when senior Collins caught the ball for a touchdown. The two-point conversion decreased the Broncs lead, but it was too far gone for the Mustangs who lost a self-defeating game 43-20.