By Louie Vera
It wasn’t pretty, but Veterans Memorial will take it.
Porter controlled time of possession, recovered three second half fumbles and the Chargers were still able to come away with a 23-9 victory Thursday night at Sams Stadium.
The win keeps the Chargers In prime position for a playoff spot and a late charge for the District 32-5A title after defeating Lopez last in a what was another tight city-rival matchup.
“Porter is so efficient with what they do,” Veterans Memorial Coach David Cantu said. “They move the chains, and we have a great admiration for what they do so anytime you’re able to come away with a win under the lights we’ll take it.”
Down 14-3 at the half Porter caught the Chargers sleeping and recovered an onside kick to start the second half.
Porter milked the clock on 13 plays getting to the red zone but the Cowboys hit a wall again.
Despite staying on the field most of the game and Veterans Memorial coughing up three fumbles only one of those turned into points for the Cowboys that kept the score at a distance.
In fact, the Head Coach Tom Campos and company moved the ball inside 25 of the Chargers five times but were only able cross the goal line once.
Cowboys’ running back workhorse Johnathan Gonzalez cut into the Chargers lead at 14-9 after capping off a 16-play 50 yard drive with 8:14 left in the game.
Then disaster struck, Porter went for two then fumbled which was taken back 85 yards back the other way for a two-point conversion and a 16-9 Chargers lead.
“The guys finally played four full quarters,” Campos said. “We were down to our third quarterback and David Fuentes did an excellent job tonight. Defense, essentially only gave up 14 points and we dug team with the guys we had on the field and I was very proud of their effort.”
Veterans Memorial’s running back Abel Martinez whose fumble led to the Porter touchdown redeemed himself on the Chargers’ next possession scoring on a 33-yard TD run to put the game away at 23-9.