The bleachers were packed Saturday as the new Minarets Youth Football teams made history playing their first game in the Central Valley Youth Football League.
The Mustangs Senior team lost a heartbreaker, 35-35, to possibly the toughest team the they will face this season, Fowler. The two teams exchanged touchdowns throughout the game and the winning score came from Fowler with under two minutes to play in the game.
Fowler punted only twice in the game (minarets none) and relied heavily on the running of their quarterback out of the spread/option offense.
The Mustangs had their own threat, Luke Tovar. The halfback accounted for all but one of the Mustangs scores while gaining more than 150 yards and scoring four touchdowns.
Wide receiver Tre Nickalulous scored the first touchdown for the Mustangs, a 75 yard completion from quarterback Nolan LeForge. LeForge ended the game with more than 150 yards in the air. The difference in the game was a missed extra point conversion by the Mustangs late in the game.
Minarets took a 35-29 lead with an impressive 97 yard drive that started from their own three yard line. With 2:46 remaining in the game Tovar ran in for the score.
Fowlers elusive quarterback wasted no time in taking back the lead, and the Mustangs found themselves trailing 35-36 with just under two minutes to play.
Starting from their own five yard line, Tovar quickly put them at mid field following a couple runs, but the Red Cats defense sacked Le Forge. With the clock winding down, and no time outs remaining, the Mustangs were forced to the air in a last ditch effort.
The Junior squad was shut out 14-0.
Up next for the youth football Mustangs is Reedley this Saturday. The teams will travel to take on the Pirates with the Juniors playing at 5 p.m. and the Seniors kicking off at 7 p.m. The Pee Wee team will play a shorten game between the Junior and Senior game.