PAGE, Ariz. - The Williams Vikings (6-0) remain undefeated after their resounding 49-13 win on the road against the Page Sand Devils (2-4) on Sept. 28.
As usual, the Williams defense showed up to play allowing only one offensive touchdown by the Sand Devils. The only other score by Page came on special teams. A kick return taken back for a touchdown late in the first half.
"We played a heck of a defensive ballgame again, we only gave up six points on our actual defense and then unfortunately we gave up six points on special teams," said Williams High School (WHS) football coach Jeff Brownlee.
The Vikings jumped out to the lead in the first quarter and never looked back. Quarterback Jeff Brownlee connected on a 42-yard touchdown pass to Adrian Solano, but Williams missed the point after touchdown (PAT). The Vikings defense again contributed to the teams's scoring for the third straight week, this time with an interception returned 40 yards for a touchdown by defensive end Brownlee. Brownlee passed to Solano for the two-point conversion to give the Vikings a 14-0 lead at the end of one quarter of play.
Page scored first in the second quarter, on an 11-yard touchdown run, PAT no good. Williams answered with a 53-yard touchdown pass from Brownlee to Coty Baxter, PAT kick good by Jorge Martinez. On the next offensive possession for the Vikings, Solano scampered 12 yards for a touchdown run, PAT good. Then on the ensuing kickoff Page returned the ball for a touchdown and converted their PAT to cut the deficit to 15 points. Williams had its smallest halftime lead all year, up 28-13 on the Sand Devils.
"Defensive highlights were Kohl Nixon, he had four sacks in that game, and he just caused problems in their backfield all game," Brownlee said. "We also had three interceptions and one fumble recovery."
In the third quarter Williams pulled away for good. Brownlee threw a 15-yard touchdown pass to Kohl Nixon, PAT good. Joaquin Salaz had a 12-yard rushing touchdown, PAT good. And Brownlee threw one more touchdown pass to Solano, this one for 15 yards, PAT good.
"To tell the truth we were a little nervous going into Page, they're pretty good sized and have some really athletic kids," said the WHS head coach. "But we just went out there and played some really good football. Our passing game was phenomenal this week, which was great because we did somewhat struggle with our run game."
Both defenses held in a scoreless fourth quarter, and the Vikings finished on top of Page with a final score of 49-13.
"Their [Page] defense was pretty tight up front so we decided to take it in the air and did very well with that. Jeff [Brownlee] and our receivers did an outstanding job," Brownlee said. "That's how diverse our offense is, if something's not working someplace we're going to find the place that it will work. And this time we took advantage of Page's secondary with our passing game."
Quarterback Brownlee finished the game 10 out of 20 for 299 yards and four touchdowns. Solano had five receptions for 137 yards and three touchdowns (one rush). Baxter had three receptions for 113 yards and one touchdown. Salaz had 12 rushes for 37 yards and one touchdown. Martinez led the team with 13 total tackles (nine solo).
Page avoided Solano on all punts and kicks by not kicking to him, never allowing the dangerous return man to get his hands on the ball. Future opponents will most likely try applying the same tactic to reduce the impact of the Vikings special teams.
Williams returns home this Friday for the first of its two consecutive final home games of the season. The Vikings play the River Valley Dust Devils (3-3) from Mohave Valley, Ariz. at 7 p.m. The strong, fast, and athletic Dust Devils should give the Vikings their toughest challenge to date.