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TOUCHDOWNS RUN AMOK IN GECKOS WIN

The GW Geckos knew they were in for a gritty contest against the Sanchez Sharks despite the Sharks (0-3) record, having forfeited their first two games this season. The Gecko offense proved steady and the defense came together as GW took their Friday night showdown 20-12.

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By Robert Balajadia

The GW Geckos knew they were in for a gritty contest against the Sanchez Sharks despite the Sharks (0-3) record, having forfeited their first two games this season.

The Gecko offense proved steady and the defense came together as GW took their Friday night showdown 20-12. GW now improves to (4-0) while the Sharks sit at (0-4).

Geckos receiver Noah Blas caught four passes for 118 yards, including an 85-yard touchdown reception late in the 2nd quarter to extend the Geckos lead 14-6.

“I saw the corner on my speed receiver [Noah] cheating in a little bit inward and I had [Noah] run a fade route. The ball was just placed right over the corner,” commented GW quarterback Brendan Santos on the 85-yard score.

The Geckos used a 3rd quarter touchdown from five yards out by Jared Taisipic to take the 20-12 lead, and nearly sealed the game in the 4th with another score.

GW was operating inside the red-zone with just under four minutes left in the game when Santos hit tight end Devin San Agustin for a 13-yard gain on a post route.

San Agustin appeared to be free for the score when Sharks defender Robert Flores snuck up from behind to lay a ball-jarring hit.

The Sharks recovered the fumble in the end zone for a touchback, giving them one last chance at a comeback with 41 seconds left to play.

Sanchez stuck to their guns, the wishbone formation, and converted on a 20-yard pass pay from Devin Leon to Carlos Saralu on 3rd down.

It was all for naught with Sanchez burning their lone timeout still inside their own 40, ending the game on a short scramble for yardage by Leon.

“We were pumped and really looking forward to facing this team because we know they too like to play smash-mouth football and always come out strong. They weren’t going to give up or go away,” said Santos on the Sharks.

Wendy's players of the game Brendan Sontos and Noah Blas were on-point all game, moving the Geckos offense through the air.

Wendy’s players of the game Brendan Sontos and Noah Blas were on-point all game, moving the Geckos offense through the air.

Big Plays – Four Scores

The first four scores of the game were all big touchdown plays all of over 65 yards, but the difference lied in special teams as the Geckos converted on both their extra points to give GW a 14-12 halftime lead.

Sanchez struck first on their first offensive series as running back Dan ‘Dan-Dan’ Cruz took a handoff from the wishbone formation right up the middle of the Geckos defense for a 72-yard touchdown run. The failed conversion left Sanchez up 6-0.

GW wasted no time after the score with return man Hezekiah Cruz taking the kickoff 65 yards for the score. Cruz ran towards the left side of his blockers before switching gears to the right side after the Sharks collapsed on the chase, causing Cruz to run untouched for the score.

Both defenses held up until Santos struck gold with the 85-yard pass to Blas.

“I didn’t know I got past my defender,” said Blas on the big score. “Games like these you have to come out and give it our 100%.”

Sanchez didn’t panic under the four-minute first-half warning by allowing their running game to take shape. Again out of the wishbone, Cruz dashed through the weak side of the Geckos defense to break loose for a 71-yard touchdown run. The Sharks were unsuccessful on the 2-point conversion, leaving the score 14-12 at the half.

The Geckos will next venture off to face the JFK Islanders Friday while the Sharks will play the FD Friars next Saturday.

PHOTO GALLERY BROUGHT TO YOU BY:

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Geckos Ryan Quitugua braces for impact against Sharks defender Robert Flores. (photo by Joey Blas)

Geckos quarterback Brendan Santos tosses a pass towards the sideline. (photo by Joey Blas)

Geckos quarterback Brendan Santos tosses a pass towards the sideline. (photo by Joey Blas)

Sharks Dan Cruz hits the gaps hard for a breakaway score in the first half. (photo by Joey Blas)

Sharks Dan Cruz hits the gaps hard for a breakaway score in the first half. (photo by Joey Blas)

Sharks quarterback Robert Flores attempts a short pass after play action in the second half. (photo by Joey Blas)

Sharks quarterback Robert Flores attempts a short pass after play action in the second half. (photo by Joey Blas)

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