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SINDALU HOLDS OFF BLAZERS

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By Robert Balajadia

Steel Blazers quarterback TJ Rodrigues was carried off the field late in the fourth quarter and did not return. (photo by Asha Robles)

Steel Blazers quarterback TJ Rodrigues was carried off the field late in the fourth quarter and did not return. (photo by Asha Robles)

With third place in the Guam Women’s Tackle Football League standings on the line, Team Sindalu defeated the Steel Blazers in a close 22-20 battle in the last game of the regular season to grab the third seed with both teams entering the game at 4-2.

Sindalu all-purpose player Deanna Garcia went up against her former team for the first time this season and she took over in the fourth quarter with her team trailing 14-8.  Garcia snatched a pass out of the air from quarterback Tiara Santos and took it 38 yards for a touchdown, giving them the lead after a successful two-point conversion.

Steel Blazers quarterback TJ Rodrigues was driving her team down the field on their next possession before taking a spill.  She would have to be carried off the field with what appeared to be a leg injury.  Garcia picked up a fumbled ball as Rodrigues went down and returned it 65 yards but the officials ruled it a forward pass instead of a fumble.  The Steel Blazers turned it over on downs two plays later.

Garcia wasted no time after the Steel Blazers turnover scoring on the a 51-yard touchdown run on the first play of the drive to extend the lead 22-14.

“We just went out there and did our thing.  This win just places us in a better spot in the playoffs so we just tried to do better.  Our teams offense always finds a way to work itself out but our defense needed to work and we did that,” stated Garcia on her teams overall play.

Arriving late to the party was nifty offensive player Mae Ann Pajaro who gave her team a much needed boost in the final four minutes.  Pajaro nearly scored on the kick-off, after Garcia’s touchdown, but Garcia came up with a huge stop at the 40-yard line to save the touchdown.

Filling in at quarterback for Rodrigues was Trisha Adkins who was able to find receiver Liz Smith for her second touchdown of the day from 15 yards out to pull the Steel Blazers with in two, 22-20.  Pajaro tried to use a draw play to punch in the two-point conversion but she was met by a host of Sindalu defenders which kept her out of the end zone.

The very next play, on the kickoff, Garcia dodged three Blazers and sprinted up the right side of the field before getting pushed out of bounds with less than ten yards to score and three minutes left in the game.

Sindalu's Deana Garcia was difficult to contain breaking loose for three touchdowns on the day. (photo by Asha Robles)

Sindalu’s Deanna Garcia was difficult to contain breaking loose for three touchdowns on the day. (photo by Asha Robles)

The Steel Blazers made a goal-line stand to give their team a final shot with under two minutes left to play.  With no timeouts remaining, Adkins tried to rally her team once more but she could not connect with Smith through the air and the Sindalu defense gave up nothing on the ground which forced the clock to keep running.  The Sindalu defense denied Pajaro and Adkins from getting to midfield which proved to be the game.

During the final drive, Sindalu had only one goal which was echoed throughout the final minutes of the game.  Garcia stated, “We just had to hold them down. That’s all our coaches kept emphasizing, was to hold them down and we did that.”  Sindalu advances to 5-2 while the Steel Blazers drop to 4-3.

Rodrigues and Smith connected from five yards out to put up the first points for the Steel Blazers and defensive back Mel Manglona scoreda touchdown for her team on defense by returning a 30-yard interception to the end zone.  Manglona had two interceptions on the day.  Garcia scored all three touchdowns for Sindalu.

Team Legacy mightily handled the Iron Maidens beating them 49-0 to remain unbeaten in the earlier game.

Playoffs for the GWTFL begin next weekend.

FINAL STANDINGS

Team Legacy 7-0
Island Stunnerz 6-1
Sindalu 5-2
Steel Blazers 4-3
Ruff Ryders 3-4
Lady Raiders 2-5
Lady Spartans 1-6
Iron Maidens 0-7

PHOTO GALLERY BROUGHT TO YOU BY:

http://www.akguam.com/ou/tamuning-scion/

Steel Blazers reciever Liz Smith caught her second touchdown in the fourth quarter which gave her team a chance to tie the game. (photo by Asha Robles)

Steel Blazers reciever Liz Smith caught her second touchdown in the fourth quarter which gave her team a chance to tie the game. (photo by Asha Robles)

Steel Blazers Mel Manglona had two interceptions for the game, including one returned for a touchdown. (photo by Asha Robles)

Steel Blazers Mel Manglona had two interceptions for the game, including one returned for a touchdown. (photo by Asha Robles)

Sindalu's Deana Garcia made a game saving tackle, stopping Steel Blazers Mae Ann Pajaro from scoring a touchdown in the fourth quarter. (photo by Asha Robles)

Sindalu’s Deanna Garcia made a game saving tackle, stopping Steel Blazers Mae Ann Pajaro from scoring a touchdown in the fourth quarter. (photo by Asha Robles)

Steel Blazers Mae Ann Pajaro looking for room to run on the kickoff return. (photo by Asha Robles)

Steel Blazers Mae Ann Pajaro looking for room to run on the kickoff return. (photo by Asha Robles)

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