Desert Hot Springs came into Friday’s homecoming game with Desert Mirage with an 0-6 record. However, after quarterback Sirvon Campbell led the Golden Eagles to a 55-20 win over Desert Mirage, they’re 1-1 and right back in the De Anza League chase.
Campbell threw for 296 yards and three touchdowns and ran for 95 yards and two more scores as the Eagles (1-6, 1-1) kept the Rams (0-7, 0-2) winless in 2016.
“One thing we always talk about is overcoming adversity, and the kids did that,” said Desert Hot Springs coach Will Littell. “Things haven’t been going our way, but our guys keep fighting and keep trying. So tonight, we took a big step in the right direction.”
The Eagles shook off a slow start to score 15 points in a 13-second span late in the first half to take a 28-12 halftime lead. After the Rams turned the ball over on downs near midfield late in the second quarter, the Eagles moved 47 yards in just over two minutes, with Campbell cruising in from the 5 for the touchdown. Campbell added the two-point conversion to turn a 13-12 Desert Hot Springs lead into a 21-12 advantage with 2:58 left in the second quarter.
On the Rams’ next series, Jordon Walker got into the backfield from his linebacker position and stripped the ball from Desert Mirage quarterback Adrian Guzman. Defensive lineman Mark Knauer picked up the loose ball at the 8 and ran in for the score. Pablo Ramirez’ kick gave the Golden Eagles a 28-12 lead with 2:45 to play in the half.
The quick burst belied the Golden Eagles’ shaky start. Desert Hot Springs fumbled away the first possession of the game at its own 47 to set up Desert Mirage’s first touchdown, a one-yard run by 6-foot-5, 245-pound running back Froilan Rodriguez. The two-point conversion attempt failed, but the Rams had a 6-0 lead with less than five minutes played.
Despite committing four penalties and a turnover in the first half of the first quarter, Desert Hot Springs found itself leading 7-6 just over two minutes later, and that touchdown came despite two sacks and a penalty.
Because of the setbacks, the Eagles actually covered 105 yards to account for an 87-yard drive. Campbell threw a 76-yard pass to wide receiver Nick Hartfield on third and 23 from the Desert Hot Springs 8, and Campbell capped the drive with a 29-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Albert Montes-Reyes.
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The Eagles took a 13-6 lead into the second quarter after Campbell connected with Walker from 29 yards out on 4th and 12 with 1:01 left in the first quarter. The Rams responded by moving 69 yards in just under two minutes to cut the Eagles lead to 13-12, with Guzman keeping from three yards out for the score.
Desert Hot Springs maintained control of the game when it forced the Rams to turn the ball over on downs at the Desert Mirage 1 with the first possession of the second half. The Eagles quickly cashed in with a one-yard touchdown run from Walker that gave the Eagles a 34-12 lead.
Campbell capped off a 55-yard touchdown drive on Desert Hot Springs’ next possession when he scored with his second five-yard touchdown run of the night. He then passed to Hartfield for the two-point conversion, and the Eagles led 42-12 with 3:40 to play in the third quarter.
Star of the game
Sirvon Campbell, Desert Hot Springs quarterback: Operating out of the spread, Campbell was borderline unstoppable, accounting for nearly 400 yards of offense. He scrambled for big yards when pressured, and passed for huge chunks of yardage when given time. His performance just edged Jordon Walker, who had a rushing touchdown, a receiving touchdown, forced a fumble that led directly to a touchdown, and made eight solo tackles.
Just the facts
Senior Gabby Rocha was named Desert Hot Springs homecoming queen at halftime…With Desert Hot Springs leading 49-12 after three quarters, the fourth quarter was played with a running clock…Despite the loss, Desert Mirage running back Manuel Ridge ran for 137 yards on 15 carries to lead all rushers…Desert Hot Springs’ two-way threat Terry Pullins injured his left leg one minute into second quarter and did not return…Desert Hot Springs had eight penalties for 70 yards in the first half, and ended the night with 15 penalties for 130 yards. The Rams committed nine penalties for 65 yards.
Desert Mirage (0-7, 0-2) hits the road to Twentynine Palms, while Desert Hot Springs (1-6, 1-1) travels to Thermal to face Coachella Valley. Both games are scheduled for Friday.
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DESERT HOT SPRINGS 55, DESERT MIRAGE 20
Desert Mirage 6 6 0 8 – 20
Desert Hot Springs 13 15 21 6 – 55
DM: Froilan Rodriguez 1 run (run failed)
DHS: Albert Montes-Reyes 29 pass from Sivron Campbell (Pablo Ramirez kick)
DHS: Jordon Walker 42 pass from Campbell (kick blocked)
DM: Adrian Guzman 3 run (run failed)
DHS: Campbell 5 run (Campbell run)
DHS: Mark Knauer 8 fumble return (Ramirez kick)
DHS: Walker 1 run (kick blocked)
DHS: Campbell 5 run (Nick Hartfield pass from Campbell)
DHS: Johnny Flores 30 pass from Campbell (Ramirez kick)
DM: Foilan Rodriguez 4 run (Rodriguez run)
DHS: Nathan Ongalibang 42 run (kick failed)
RUSHING (Carries-Yds-TDs) DM: Manuel Ridge, 15-137; Foilan Rodriguez, 8-48-2; Jaime Serrano, 9-24; Adrian Guzman, 14-46-1; Baudelio Tizoc, 1-1; Jesse Gutierrez, 1–6; Ruben Valenzuela, 6-39. DHS: Jordon Walker, 5-64-1; Sirvon Campbell, 13-95-2; Johnny Flores, 1–2; Nathan Ongalibang, 1-42-1.
PASSING (Comp.-Att- INT—TD- Yds): DM: Adrian Guzman, 0-5-1-0-0. DHS: Sirvon Campbell, 8-16-1-3-296.
RECEIVING (Rec.-Yds-TDs): DHS: Nick Hartfield, 2-94; Albert Montes-Reyes, 3-93-1; Jordon Walker, 2-72-1; Johnny Flores, 1-30-1.