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Hawks preserve 13-12 win with 2-point conversion stop
Amari Taylor
Amari Taylor (20) and Isaiah Hidalgo helped lead Central Valley’s football team to a 13-12 victory over Los Banos on March 26 at CUSD Stadium. The Hawks improved to 2-0 in WAC play and will battle the crosstown-rival Ceres High Bulldogs (2-0) this Friday at 7 p.m. - photo by Dale Butler

Central Valley’s football team didn’t play its best, but still managed to eke out a 13-12 victory against visiting Los Banos in Western Athletic Conference South Division play Friday night at CUSD Stadium.

The Tigers opted to go for the win after cutting the deficit to one with less than 30 seconds to play.

Central Valley stuffed Los Banos’ 2-point conversion run attempt at the line of scrimmage.

 “For it to come down to one play and for us to step up at that time was exciting,” Central Valley coach Derrick Goblirsch said. “Everybody was fired up.”

“I’m proud of my team,” Hawks’ linebacker/quarterback Isaiah Hidalgo said. “We fought until the end. We did our job. We all flew to the ball and got the stop. We knew they weren’t going to pass because it would be too risky.”

Central Valley improved to 2-0 in the WAC standings.

Los Banos dropped to 0-2 in league play.

The Tigers lost 16-13 to the Pacheco Panthers the previous week.

“We wanted to get off to a good start and we’ve done that. The strength of our team is up front on both sides of the ball.”
Coach Derrick Goblirsch

“We wanted to get off to a good start and we’ve done that,” Goblirsch said. “The strength of our team is up front on both sides of the ball.”

Hidalgo rushed for 163 yards and one touchdown on 31 carries while making his second start at quarterback.

He completed 3 of 10 passes for 40 yards with one touchdown and one interception.

He hauled in a 30-yard pass from Omar Mendoza.

Mendoza also had a 14-yard TD reception.

Amari Taylor gained 87 yards on 15 carries.

Tyrell Williams totaled 26 yards on two catches.

Joseph Alamo collected a team-high 10 tackles.

Alexis Becerra tallied eight tackles.

Roberto Tiscareno had one interception.

“The kids worked hard all night,” Goblirsch said. 

Central Valley led 7-6 at halftime.

Hidalgo tossed a 14-yard TD pass to Mendoza in the first quarter.

Hidalgo’s 20-yard TD run put the Hawks ahead, 13-6, in the third quarter.

Los Banos cut the deficit to 13-12 with a 1-yard TD run late in the fourth quarter.

“It was a really competitive game,” Hidalgo said. “They really wanted to win. We did, too.”

“We knew they were going to be tough,” Goblirsch added.

Central Valley will face crosstown-rival Ceres High this Friday at CUSD Stadium.

The Hawks have an all-time record of 12-2 against the Bulldogs.

Central Valley defeated Ceres High 55-13 last season as Hidalgo rushed for a career-high 205 yards and two touchdowns on 19 carries. He also returned a punt 60 yards for a score. 

“The kids look forward to this game every year,” Goblirsch said. “There’s more excitement with both of us being 2-0. It will be a good test for us. They got some talent this year. They’re doing a lot of things right. We know it’s going to be a battle. We’re going to get their best effort and we’ll give them ours as well.”

Added Hidalgo: “There’s a lot at stake. They really want it. We really want it.”