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Mabton's 'O' line subdues Manson

MABTON - The story of the game last Friday night in Mabton was the Vikings' offensive line.

The not so big, but very young and physical offensive line of Mabton had its way with Manson, sparking the Vikes to a 27-0 whitewashing of the visitors.

The Central Washington 'B' League victory upped Mabton's conference record to 3-2, 4-2 overall.

"Our offensive line played well all night," said Mabton Coach D.J. Search. "We're young on the line, only one senior, but they're physical and very fast. They were opening some huge holes for our rushing attack."

The linemen in question include senior James Magana and underclassmen Robert Marquez, Ramon Monciviaz, Alex Balli, Vicente Tovar, Adrian Magana and tight end Moises Gutierrez.

Search said most of the credit for the 249 yards his club gained on the ground goes to his linemen.

"What a job they did," he said.

Of course, someone had to blast through the holes Search's offensive linemen were creating. That task went to Pablo Sanchez and Alex Zavala, who combined for 209 rushing yards and between them scored all four of Mabton's touchdowns.

Sanchez, who gained a game best 142 yards on 11 carries, scored the first TD of the game on a 35-yard burst.

"It was a simple lead play," said Search, explaining that Sanchez followed two running backs and hit the hole his offensive linemen created.

Zavala also had a first quarter TD run for the Vikes, capping off a short drive with an 18-yard scamper that came on a counter.

Marco Zepeda hit one of two extra point kicks on the two first quarter touchdowns to give Mabton a 13-0 lead.

Sanchez added a 91-yard breakaway TD run in the second quarter.

Manson, on the previous play, went for it on a 4th-and-1 play from Mabton's 9-yard line. Unable to convert, though, the Vikes took over possession of the ball. On the very next call, Sanchez found daylight and outraced everyone to the end zone.

"It was another counter," said Search. "Our offensive linemen had people on the ground. Pablo (Sanchez) found an opening and just outran everyone."

Mabton pitched the ball to Zavala on the ensuing 2-point conversion and he bounced into the end zone to up the Vikes' lead to 21-0.

The Vikings put an insurance TD on the scoreboard in the third quarter, when Zavala capped off a long drive with a 4-yard TD run.

For the most part, Mabton kept the ball on the ground against Manson. QB Ryan Harris, a senior, did air it out seven times, connecting on five of the passes for a total of 62 yards. It was the second straight week Harris wasn't intercepted.

"Ryan went 11-for-16 last week and then had a 5-for-7 night last Friday," said Search. "Not bad passing numbers at all."

In looking ahead to this coming Friday's game at Pateros, located near Wenatchee, Search said his Vikings may throw the ball a bit more than they did against Manson.

"We know Pateros jams the defensive line with 10 guys," Search said. "So you may see us throwing the ball more.

"On offensive, Pateros likes to spread the field on offense. We'll have to play good assignment football to shut them down.

"Paterson is tied for first in our league with Waterville. It's a game we need to win," he added.

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