(North Broadway Corridor, Lincoln Heights)—[“Live Stream” Game of the Week Preview] The 2019 L.A. City Section’s Northern League opener finally arrived for the undefeated home team, Lincoln High School Tigers and their opponents, the Torres Toros from East Los Angeles. The Tigers, with their impressive pre-season record of (5-0) were led into this special tribute game to their legendary alumnus, Kenny Washington, Jr., by their new head coach, Gabriel Cotero. The Toros, under veteran Head Coach, Charles Burnley, came into the contest with a positive (4-1) record. In addition to producing last Friday’s game via “Live Stream,” we now present our viewers with another special feature— game highlights and a full write-up. We will add an Erik Sarni game photo gallery shortly with pictures of the pre-game and halftime tribute to Kenny Washington, Jr.
Photo Gallery: Erik Sarni, @EastsideMediaTV/In conjunction with East L.A. Sports Scene Productions
Game Summary: (1st Half)—The game was played very close and near even. Both teams scored two TDs, the Tigers by way of #22/RB/SO/5-10/190 lb/Andre Watkins’ two rushes for 9 yds. and 25 yds. respectively. One 2 point conversion attempt was good by Watkins, and the second one failed. For the Toros, they scored on a broken 60 yd. pass play from #8/QB/JR/Devin Ramblas to #4/WR/SR/Najiah Harrison. The 2 point conversion was good. Then with 3:21 left in the period, they scored again on an 8yd. run, also by Harrison. PAT was good for a (15-14) lead. Then, with just :09 seconds left in the half, Toros’ placekicker, #30/SR/PK/José Hernandez drilled a 39 yd. field goal for the final points. Halftime Score: Torres 18, Lincoln 14.
(2nd Half/3rd Quarter)—The Tigers mounted a drive, and with 8:49 remaining, scored again on the ground when Watkins punched in his 3rd rushing TD of the game. the PAT failed and the score was now (20-18), Lincoln. There would be no more scoring in the quarter.
In the 4th quarter, with 9:49 remaining, Torres once again kicked a field goal by Hernandez and put them back in the lead at (21-20). A few minutes later, in what was perhaps the biggest play of the game, the Tigers managed to block a Toros punt at their 30 yard line and took over from there. After a few Watkins’ carries down to the 5 yd. line, the Tigers punched it in at the 3:30 mark on a 3 yd. pass from #7/QB/SO/5-10/Ivan Plancarte to #12/WR/SR/Andrew Perez who tip-toed into the end zone just as he reached the pylon marker. Watkins drove with all his strength into the end zone for the 2 point conversion. This made the score Lincoln 28, Torres 21.
After the kick-off, the Toros took the ball and marched down the field in the next minute and a half and punched it into the end zone on an 8 yd. run off right tackle by #6/RB/SR/Elijah Vasquez. This score came with 2:05 left in the game. The climactic finish then drew center stage, when instead of going for the tie with a regular PAT, Coach Burnley, and his Toros, after accepting an illegal procedure penalty against the Tigers, decided to attempt a 2-point conversion for a possible win. However, the Tigers goal-line defense dug in and withstood the rushing attempt by their jumbo package QB replacement for this play, #12/SR/6-4/255 lbs/Damon McKinley. He was stopped just an inch away from crossing the goal line. The score remained (28-27) in favor of Lincoln. After securing the Toros kick-off, the Tigers ran the clock out during their 2 minute drill to preserve the huge Northern League victory #1. A fitting way to end the game on the 9th Annual Tribute to their legendary alumnus, Kenny Washington, Jr. Would you agree that he his up there still casting a big and winning smile down on his fellow Tigers.
In a post-game interview with Lincoln’s Head Coach, Gabriel Cotero, he commented that “playing two consecutive, and extremely close games gave us the confidence to come out as winners. I was very pleased with the way that both of our squads, the offense and defense, pulled together against a very strong Torres team. On offense, we passed the ball well, and kept working on our running game because our “O” line was very efficient at opening the holes for our backs, especially for Andre Watkins. We knew that to win, there would be no room for error.” When asked about his defense, Coach Cotero said that “we bent quite a bit, but didn’t break. Our blocked punt late in the game, gave us tremendous momentum to drive in for the go-ahead TD.” He closed with this statement, “Our young men strongly believe in the saying, that goes along with the mentality of game execution, ‘Don’t ever give up!’ “
Note From The Editor: For all Lincoln followers, fans, and Alumni, we’d like to inform you that we will be returning to Lincoln this Friday, 10/11 for our second “Live Stream” of the team. They will be playing Eagle Rock in their Northern League Game #2. To view the game on “Live Stream,” please go to our game flyer to subscribe. If you aren’t able to watch it during the announced time frame, from 7-10 pm, no worries, because through your NFHSNetwork.Com subscription, you will be able to watch it immediately after it concludes, through the “Video On Demand” feature that comes with your subscription.