Fairfax Defeats PaliHi Dolphins Football 14-7

By Sue Pascoe

Had the football game between Palisades High School and Fairfax started at 7:10 instead of 7 p.m., the final score would have been 7-0 in favor of the Dolphins. But the game started on time, and only six minutes later the Lions were leading, 14-0.

Fairfax held on to post an upset win, 14-7, and remain unbeaten after two Western League games. Palisades is 1-1.

“There were stupid mistakes at the beginning of the game,” Pali Coach Tim Hyde said. “We gave them 14 points and then we were just climbing uphill the rest of the game.”

He continued, “We didn’t make any big plays and our offense usually makes those kinds of plays. Our defense played outstanding.”

Max Palees follows lead blocker Cole Aragon.
Photo: Drew Vaupen

“I thought our defense regrouped well after we made stupid mistakes at the beginning of the game,” said senior Baraka Beckett, who plays offensive and defensive tackle. He noted that Fairfax had played some tough non-league opponents, including Loyola and Crenshaw. “It was a competitive team who played to win.”

The Dolphins received the opening kickoff and started on their own 17. Unable to move it, they set up for a punt, but through miscommunication, kicker Cambell Geddes was looking towards the sidelines when the ball was snapped. It fell beside him and the Lions recovered it on the Pali 7. They scored and the extra point was good, less than two minutes into the game.

After the next kickoff, Palisades was unable to move the ball and and had to punt. Fairfax took over on Pali’s 41 and marched downfield, despite two tackles by Noah Karp and an intentional grounding call on the quarterback. The Lions scored on a 20-yard pass play and added the PAT for a 14-0 lead just six minutes into the quarter.

Midway through the second quarter, the Dolphins returned a punt to their own 48. Sparked by an 18-yard pass from quarterback Daniel Hayes to Max Palees, and two Fairfax penalties, Pali moved down to the 1-yard line. With one second on the clock before the half, a quarterback sneak by Hayes and a PAT by Geddes gave the Dolphins their only points.

In the second half, both defenses settled in and neither team was able to score. The Dolphins were their own worst enemy with fumbles and missed opportunities.

The fourth quarter involved great defensive plays by both teams. Baraka Beckett sacked the quarterback, causing a 20-yard loss to the Fairfax 24. After a punt, Pali began a drive to its own 47, only to fumble the ball away on the Fairfax 32.

“It could have gone either way, we just made more mistakes,” said sophomore Palees. Looking ahead to Pali’s next game, he added,“We’ll cleanup our mistakes and play more as a team.”

The Dolphins host Westchester this Friday night at 7 p.m. The Comets (1-l in league) crushed University last Friday, 58-7, while Venice (2-0) defeated Hamilton, 35-8.

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