Saturday’s homecoming alumni game was a battle from the very start. The teams went back and forth with touchdowns, fumbles and interceptions. In the second quarter the Yuba offensive line had a difficult time holding back the Hartnell defense. The Yuba quarterback, Isaiah Rios, was sacked multiple times before he could throw the ball which ultimately led to a forced punt. But it was not more than a minute later that Hartnell fumbled the ball and Yuba’s Eugene Dawson stripped them of possession. This lead into a 49er touchdown and allowed them to end the first half at 16-10.
During halftime Dr. G.H. Javaheripour took the field with a few alumni from both Yuba and Hartnell college. He presented a helmet to an alumni from Hartnell college who had served as Yuba College staff. This alumni had played many years ago in a Yuba versus Hartnell game where Yuba had come out victorious. Dr G.H. Javaheripour continued the school spirit into the second half by calling on the crowd to cheer at multiple points in the game.
The second half did not start out in 49er favor. Hartnell intercepted the ball and drove in their own touchdown. The teams were tied as Hartnell’s kicker took the field for the extra point. But Yuba clapped back by smacking down the kickers attempt and leaving them tied up to end of the third quarter.
Hartnell scored another touchdown early in the fourth quarter, putting them ahead– but on Hartnell’s next possession they fumbled the ball and 49ers once again recovered it. Joel Contreras made the tying catch for Yuba. With less than a minute on the clock, the extra point would have put Yuba ahead but the kicker missed the shot and Hartnell received possession. In the final minute, Hartnell was able to move the ball down the field to the 29 yard line and attempted a field goal. The kicker’s shot missed and so the game went to overtime.
In overtime, teams are set up on the 25 yard line and given four attempts to score. If they do not score in those four attempts, possession switches until one team scores. The first to make a touchdown wins. Yuba won the coin toss and decided to take defense first. Hartnell quickly threw away their four attempts and it was time for offense to take the field. The first two downs for Yuba quickly went without fruition. But on their third down, Joshua Chapell caught the ball and ran it in to finish the game. Both teams left everything they had on the field, creating the perfect homecoming atmosphere as people cheered and stomped their feet for the entire 3 hours. This is the second win in a row for the 49ers and hopefully the beginning of a winning streak that lasts the rest of the season.