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Aztec football rally withers against Artichokes

The Pima Community College football team (1-3, 0-2 in WSFL) played its first WSFL conference road game of the season on Saturday at Scottsdale Community College.

The Aztecs surrendered 14 unanswered points in the second quarter and were shut out in the fourth quarter in their 34-21 loss to the Artichokes (3-0, 1-0).

The Aztecs trailed 17-7 at halftime but put together a nearly 10-minute drive to open the third quarter. Freshman quarterback Jordan Mariteragi found sophomore LeBronze Allen for the 26-yard touchdown reception to cut the deficit to 17-14. Mariteragi completed a 43-yard pass to Larry Rembert on third down to keep the drive alive.

After a Scottsdale punt, the Aztecs had momentum but Mariteragi’s pass was intercepted by Traivon Clayton and returned 55 yards for the score. The Aztecs responded on their next possession, driving 91 yards and capping it off with Mariteragi finding Rembert for a 47-yard score. The touchdown cut the deficit to 24-21 with 2:54 left in the third quarter.

The Artichokes had a response of their own on a six-play, 70 yard drive. Micah Reed-Campos scored on a 12-yard run to make it 31-21 with 15 seconds left in the third. The Aztecs struggled in the fourth quarter as they had an turnover, a punt and two turnover-on-downs. 

The game began with each team putting together impressive first drives. The Artichokes held the ball for almost 9.5 minutes but the Aztecs’ defense held them to a 22-yard field goal.

The Aztecs responded on their opening drive going 63 yards in eight minutes. Sophomore Bryson Ventura scored on an 11-yard run and sophomore kicker Coby Oswalt added the extra point to give Pima 7-3 lead with 2:28 left in the first quarter.

The Artichokes responded when Reed-Campos scored on an 11 yard run on the opening play of the second quarter to give Scottsdale the lead back.

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The Aztecs were forced to punt on their next two possessions. The Artichokes drove down field with two minutes left and sophomore Haki Woods intercepted a pass in the endzone but fumbled to give Scottsdale possession on Pima’s 16 yardline. The Artichokes capitalized with 12 seconds left in the half when Devin Neal scored on an 11-yard reception.

The Aztecs will be back at Kino North Stadium next Saturday when they host the Air Force Prep Academy in the Coaches for Charity Aztec Classic. Kick-off is set for noon.

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Ben Carbajal/PCC

Receiver Bryson Ventura put the Aztecs ahead 7-3 in the first quarter when he scored on an 11-yard run. The Aztecs fell to Scottsdale Community College 34-21 on Saturday and are now 1-3 overall and 0-2 in WSFL play.

Scottsdale CC Artichokes 34, Pima CC Aztecs 21

PCC     7     0     14     0     21
SCC     3    14    14     3    34