For so much of Beaumont’s 19-0 win over Desert Hot Springs on Friday, it seemed one play might make the difference. Unfortunately for the Golden Eagles, it did.
Midway through the third quarter, with the game tied at 0-0, the Golden Eagles lined up to punt from their own 13 yard line. Quarterback/punter Baylee Carter was forced to scoop up a low snap, and decided to sprint out of the end zone. He was tackled a yard short of a first down at the Desert Hot Springs’ 22, and three plays later, Beaumont workhorse running back Donny Ortega, who rushed for 100 yards, scored the game’s first points with a 16-yard touchdown run. Michael Westbrook’s extra point gave the Cougars’ a 7-0 lead with 5:08 to play in the third quarter.
Those points turned out to be all Beaumont would need for the win, but the Cougars’ added 12 more with two touchdowns in the fourth quarter to seal the verdict. Multi-purpose man Kyle Phillips, who lined up at three different offensive positions during the game, scored with a quarterback keeper from nine yards out to cap off the Cougars’ next possession and give the visitors a 13-0 lead with 10:24 to play. Beaumont running back Fabian Marble, who led all rushers with 187 yards on 22 carries, fittingly scored the Cougars’ final touchdown on their next possession from two yards out with 8:02 to play. That score was set up by Phillips, who returned an interception 61 yards to the Desert Hot Springs’ 9.
Desert Hot Springs’ coach Will Littell said his team still has some improvements to make where game awareness is concerned, but he was pleased with the overall effort, particularly Carter’s.
“The ball was on the ground, and he was trying to make something happen there (on fourth down), and he almost made it,” said Littell. “I’ll say this, Baylee Carter is a special athlete. He gives us his all.”
The halftime stats belied the second-half rush to come, instead revealing the extent of both teams’ offensive struggles, defensive dominance, or both. The Eagles had only 89 yards total offense, with 22 of those coming on a run late in the half by running back Jose Rubio. Desert Hot Springs’ quarterbacks were also sacked six times for -45 yards. The good news for the Eagles, particularly in such a close game, was they had no fumbles and no interceptions.
Beaumont didn’t fare much better. The Cougars managed only 109 yards total offense, with no passing yards. Half of those yards came on Beaumont’s first play from scrimmage, when Marble went 50 yards off-tackle to set the Cougars up with a first and 10 at the Desert Hot Springs’ 15. But an illegal procedure penalty, three straight runs managing only two yards, and an incompletion on fourth down gave the Eagles the ball back at their own 15.
The Eagles’ defense was once again led by linebacker Jordon Walker, who also had a standout game in Desert Hot Springs’ previous outing, a 20-13 loss to Rim of the World. In the first half alone, he forced a fumble, had six tackles, and pressured Beaumont quarterback William Calder three of the five times he dropped back to pass. Most of those plays were made while taking on Beaumont’s massive tight end/tackle Aaric Sanders, listed at 6-6, 320. Calder did not attempt a pass in the second half, as the Cougars’ relentlessly pounded the Desert Hot Springs’ defense with off-tackle belly plays out of the wishbone.
Star of the Game
Fabian Marble, Beaumont RB: Marble sent an early notice with his 50-yard run on the first play from scrimmage, and the Desert Hot Springs defense got a look at him 17 times in the second half when he piled up 119 of his game-high 187 yards rushing and scored the Cougars’ final touchdown of the night.
Just the Facts
Along with his quarterbacking duties, Baylee Carter also contributed four punts for an average of just over 40 yards per kick, and he flipped field early on with 58 yard punt that put Beaumont at it’s own 8. The Cougars’ turned the ball over on downs on its’ previous poession at the Desert Hot Springs’ 15…Despite a 50-yard run from Fabian Marble on its’ first play from scrimmage, the Cougars then handed off to three different running backs on its’ first series…Beaumont was penalized nine times for 82 yards, while Desert Hot Springs was flagged five times for 50 yards…Desert Hot Springs turned the ball over only once via a late interception, while Beaumont fumbled four times and lost two…Desert Hot Springs head coach Will Littell said his team will use the next week to heal some of the injuries his team has sustained in the first weeks of the season.
Both teams have next week off, and return to action Oct. 7. Beaumont travels to Hemet, while Desert Hot Springs visits Twentynine Palms.
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Beaumont 19, Desert Hot Springs 0
Beaumont 0 0 7 13 – 19
Desert Hot Springs 0 0 0 0 – 0
B: Donny Ortega 16 run (Michael Westbrook kick)
B: Kyle Phillips 9 run (kick blocked)
B: Fabian Marble 2 run (run failed)
RUSHING (Carries-Yds-TDs) B: Fabian Marble, 22/187-1; Donny Ortega, 21-100-1; Steve Ramirez, 4-23; Michael Torquato, 4-4; Kyle Phillips, 3-15-1; William Calder, 3-7. DHS: Sirvon Campbell, 7–13; Baylee Carter, 9-41; Jose Rubio, 3-23; Nathan Ongalibang, 1–1; Nick Hartfield, 4–17; Kejuan Wyatt, 4-11.
PASSING (Comp.-Att- INT—TD- Yds) — B: William Calder, 1-5-0-0-0. DHS: Sirvon Campbell, 0-5-0-0-0; Baylee Carter, 4-9-1-0-58.
RECEIVING (Rec.-Yds-TDs) B: Kyle Phillips, 1-0. DHS: Sirvon Campbell, 2-29; Nick Hartfield, 2-29.