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King City
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November 27, 2022

Football | King City Mustangs’ defense sparks win over Stevenson

KING CITY — Coming off their best game of the season against the Gonzales Spartans, the King City Mustangs had one last matchup against the Stevenson Pirates before they start league play next week.

Stevenson is going through a rebuilding season after losing a lot of talent from the year before, including Evan Johnson, who now attends Brigham Young University. In their first game of the season, they lost to an undefeated St. Francis 21-6.

The Mustangs came into the Sept. 16 game with a 1-2 record. So far this season, their struggles have been at the offense end, but after last week’s win against Gonzales, one can see what this offense can be when they execute.

In the first half, the King City offense struggled, as they didn’t score. Thanks to the defense, which played another great game, that would not only keep the Mustangs in the game, but also would do enough to help them win.

After a scoreless first by both teams, Stevenson was the first to get on the scoreboard when Trent Trool found his receiver for a 61-yard pass to give them a 7-0 lead in the second quarter. The Pirates took that lead into halftime.

The last time the Mustangs were shut out was back in week one against Greenfield and they needed the defense to put some points on the board.

Once again, the defense came through when King City’s Isaac Benavides scored on a fumble recovery to tie the game at 7-7. From that point, the Mustangs’ defense would control the rest of the game.

Benavides had two touchdowns and 11 carries for 66 yards rushing.

King City’s offense finally got on the board when Jjey Martinez rushed in for his fourth rushing touchdown of the season. The Mustangs added another touchdown to secure a 21-7 win over Stevenson.

Martinez had eight carries for 43 yards with one touchdown and went 11 of 24 for 165 passing yards.

As league play begins, if the Mustangs could get 21 points out of their offense a game, they have a great shot of winning the league.

As of now, St. Francis looks like the favorite, but they have played close games with a physical defense. Soledad will also be a contender, but they make too many mistakes that the King City coaching staff won’t.

The Mustangs will have a big test next week, when they travel to Salinas to play Rancho San Juan on Sept. 30.

Jason Gallardo
Jason Gallardo is the sports reporter for King City Rustler and Salinas Valley Tribune, a unified publication of Greenfield News, Soledad Bee and Gonzales Tribune. He covers high school sports for South Monterey County.
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