NAPA — Bend. Don’t break.
That’s just what the Miners did Friday night in Napa and they walked out of Memorial Stadium with a 14-13 victory.
“We have a philosophy. It’s bend. Don’t break,” said Nevada Union senior linebacker Justin Houlihan. “Teams are going to drive on us. But once we get inside the red zone, (we) bend, but we’re not going to give it up.”
A year ago it was Napa celebrating a one-point victory over Nevada Union in Hooper Stadium after a defensive stand. The Miners returned the favor this time around.
Leading 14-7 in the fourth quarter, the Miners defense seemed to have Napa bottled up, but multiple penalties kept the Indians final drive alive and they eventually scored on a 3-yard run from Brandon Herter to pull within one with just 2 minutes left in the game.
On the extra point, Napa opted to go for two and the lead.
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Indians quarterback Isaiah Newton dropped back and lofted a pass to the back corner of the end zone. The coverage was tight and ball fell incomplete.
Nevada Union celebrated what they thought was the game-clinching defensive stand. But, they would have to do it all over again as on the ground next the football was a yellow flag and the call was defensive pass interference. Napa would get another shot, this time from the 1-yard line after the penalty.
A yard away from victory, the Indians handed the ball to Herter, but the Miners surged through Napa’s offensive line and sophomore Tino Sanchez-Lane made stop in the backfield.
“It was really nice, and for our defense to do it was special,” Nevada Union head coach Dennis Houlihan said. “They had a great game. They really did.”
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