The Walden Grove Red Wolves handed Nogales its first loss of the football season on Friday, defeating the Apaches 29-0 at NHS.
The game began with several big plays from the NHS defense, including an interception in the end zone by Genaro Parra, a fumble recovery by Oscar Felix on a punt, and an interception by Abraham Aldaz. But the Nogales offense couldn’t capitalize.
The Apaches also suffered a jarring loss when linebacker Christopher Correa sustained a bad leg injury five minutes into the game and had to be transported out of the stadium in an ambulance.
Walden Grove eventually broke the scoreless tie with 4:48 left in the first half on a 38-yard touchdown pass followed by a two-point conversion. The score remained 8-0 at the half.
With 7:39 left in the third quarter, another touchdown pass and two-point conversion gave the Red Wolves a 16-0 lead. Three minutes later, a 52-yard touchdown run and extra point put Walden Grove up 23-0.
The Red Wolves capped off the scoring with a two-yard run with a little more than five minutes left in the game. Nogales blocked the extra-point attempt and the score stood at 29-0.
Second-half highlights for the Apaches included a sack by Gael Martinez and a fumble recovery by Jose Jimenez.
The game, which lasted well over three hours, saw an unusually high number of penalty flags, to the point that annoyed Nogales fans began chanting “Let them play!” at the officials during the second half. But the penalties affected both teams – Walden Grove had two touchdown passes called back on the same drive at the end of the fourth quarter due to infractions.
When the buzzer finally sounded, the Red Wolves had raised their record to 3-1, while previously undefeated Nogales fell to the same mark.
The Apaches travel to Vail to play Empire High School (1-3) on Friday, Sept. 27, then begin 5A Southern Region play when they host Ironwood Ridge (1-3) at 7 p.m. on Oct, 4.