Vikings defend their home field

Sam Kobylar

Staff Writer

Even though the Vikings came into Sunday afternoon’s game against East Coast Prep with an overall record of 2-2, the Vikings were still looking for their first home win. In their previous two home games, the Vikings got outscored by their opponents 78-28. As both of their losses came at home, both of their wins came on the road and where they have outscored their opponents 89-34.

The Vikings overcame their home losing streak by defeating the talented East Coast Prep team with a final score of 34-13. A win like this against a talented team might just be what this football team needed.

East Coast Prep came in with a 3-1 record and outscoring their opponents 102-20 in their 3 wins. Coming into the game, it looked like the matchup wasn’t going to favor the Vikings.

“It definitely can [boost this team’s confidence]. Now it gets us to 3-2. Obviously when we slipped to 1-2 we weren’t feeling very great but getting back to 3-2 definitely helps,” said Hudson Valley football coach Mike Muehling.

The Vikings got off to a little bit of a slow start in this game and couldn’t get on the scoreboard in the first quarter while they gave up a touchdown to East Coast Prep on a 5 yard touchdown run, which put the Vikings in an early 6-0 hole.

However, the rest of this game was all Vikings as Hudson Valley outscored East Coast Prep 34-7 the rest of the game. The Vikings got on the scoreboard in the beginning of the second quarter with an 8 yard touchdown run by speedy quarterback Rafael Hidalgo, which would even the score at 6 each. Then, the Vikings would get one more touchdown before halftime as running back Jamal Williams scored on a 1 yard touchdown run and the Vikings made extra point to take a 13-6 lead heading into halftime.

After finishing the first half strong, the Vikings picked up right where they left off in the second half. After East Coast Prep tied the game at 13 early in the third quarter, the Vikings went on to shutout East Coast Prep the rest of the way and out score them 21-0 in the final 27 minutes of the game.

“Defense played really well. I think our secondary had a very improved game. There were some big plays that hit us early in our secondary and then they got it figured out. The guys played with a little more confidence and I think that really helped them. We got to eliminate the big plays and play every single play as hard as we can,” said Muehling on the solid defensive game.

While the defense did their part to keep the Vikings in the game, their offense performed just as well in the second half. After East Coast Prep evened the score at 13 each, the Vikings would respond with a 34 yard touchdown run by Vikings’ rushing leader Jaylen McIntyre, which gave the Vikings a 20-13 lead late in the third quarter.

The Vikings scored again just a few minutes later as defensive back Hashim Sesay intercepted a pass deep in East Coast Prep’s own territory to set up excellent field position for the Vikings’ offense right before the end of the third quarter. The Vikings would take advantage of the great field position by putting up another touchdown with a 1 yard touchdown run by Jamal Williams to give the Vikings a commanding 27-13 lead over East Coast Prep.

Even though Williams only ran for 7 total yards in the game in 5 carries, 2 of those carries were one yard touchdown runs. The Vikings were running all over the place in this game as each of their first four touchdowns were running touchdowns and had 223 total rushing yards in the game.

“Our running game got going. When you can beat a team 3 to 4 yards at a time it’s a pretty good feeling and we weren’t relying on huge plays,” said Muehling.

The Vikings would get one more touchdown in garbage time thanks to an 8 yard touchdown pass from Rafael Hidalgo to Antoin Montgomery with under two minutes remaining in the game to help secure Hudson Valley’s 34-13 win over East Coast Prep.

This was a great all-around performance by the Vikings to give them an overall record of 3-2 on the season. The Vikings next game will be on Saturday, Oct.10 against Monroe at home at 1 p.m..

“We got our work cut out for us to try and stay a winning team. We are just going to take this week like we do every week, one game at a time, and work as hard as we can and try to outwork our opponent and play the game and see what happens,” said Muehling on Hudson Valley’s upcoming game against Monroe.

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