News Education Sports Obits Events Contests Classifieds Autos Jobs Search
story.lead_photo.caption Democrat photo/Kevin LabotkaCalen Kruger runs for a big gain Oct. 16 during the Pintos’ loss to Hallsville .

The California Pintos football team (6-2) had its four-game winning streak snapped Oct. 16 after a 50-21 loss to the Hallsville Indians (5-3).

California had a chance to take an early lead as the Pintos were inside the red zone with around six minutes to go in the first quarter, but they were forced to try a field goal attempt that did not convert. Later in the quarter, the Indians struck first as they scored with 16 seconds left to take a 6-0 lead; California was able to stop their two-point attempt.

In the second quarter, the Indians extended their lead to 14-0 after a 20-yard touchdown pass and successful two point conversion with 6:59 left in the quarter to make it 14-0. The Pintos lost the ball on a fumble during the following kickoff and Hallsville scored again, this time on a 31-yard touchdown pass, to make it 22-0 with just over five minutes to go in the quarter.

California lost its second fumble of the game on the following kickoff, and Hallsville again recovered it. The Indians then capitalized on the mistake to score again and make it a 28-0 game with 1:46 left in the half.

The Pintos were able to get on the board right before halftime, as Tagen Higgins scored on a 19-yard touchdown run to make it 28-7 with under a minute left before halftime.

This game was the first time since the Pintos' matchup with Blair Oaks on Sept. 11 that California has trailed by double digits this season. Pintos head coach Derek Scroggins said he felt the team's energy was fine, but they did not execute.

"We did not execute. We made way too many mistakes and they ended up costing us," Scroggins said.

The Pintos' defense was on the field a lot during the second quarter; Scroggins said Hallsville did a good job of keeping the Pintos' offense off the field.

"The easiest way to stop our offense tonight was to keep us off the field," Scroggins said. "Hallsville did a good job, we had those two mistakes on kickoff returns and they did a good job of keeping us off. The defense did a good job of holding them for a while; unfortunately, we ended up giving up a few scores."

Hallsville scored first in the second half as they scored another touchdown to make it 36-7 with 8:51 left in the third quarter. Later in the quarter, the Pintos were able to get good field position after recovering a fumble on a high snap near Hallsville's 35-yard line. Calen Kruger then had a big run that took the ball down to the two-yard line. Kruger then scored on a two-yard rush to make it 36-15 with 4:34 left in the quarter.

Hallsville pulled away again in the fourth quarter, scoring with 11:54 left in the quarter to make it 44-15, then scored again later in the game to make it 50-15 with 6:01 left on the clock. California scored in the final moments of the game on a 14-yard touchdown run by Higgins with less than a minute left to give the game its final score.

Scroggins said there is a ton the team can learn from this loss, given the positive result after the Pintos' only other defeat this season.

"I mean, the last time we lost a game, we were able to win four games in a row," Scroggins said. "Our kids don't like how this feels right now, and I believe we will be ready to go for next week. Hopefully, this will only make us better."

The Pintos' next game is at 7 p.m Oct. 23 at Southern Boone (4-3). Southern Boone is coming off of a 42-21 loss to Blair Oaks.

COMMENTS - It looks like you're using Internet Explorer, which isn't compatible with our commenting system. You can join the discussion by using another browser, like Firefox or Google Chrome.
It looks like you're using Microsoft Edge. Our commenting system is more compatible with Firefox and Google Chrome.