LAUGHLIN — The Needles Mustangs wasted no time in getting on the scoreboard in their 62-0 rout of the Laughlin Cougars Sept. 16.
Needles’ Frankie Garcia ran the kickoff back for the opening points and Trey Tsosie earned the two-point conversion to give the Mustangs an early 8-0 lead.
Needles never looked back.Derek Wagstaff led the Mustangs with three touchdowns and one two-point conversion. Garcia had two touchdowns, one rushing touchdown and one defensive touchdown off an interception he made.
Laughlin worked hard to try and get some drives together, getting some rushing yards but couldn’t quite complete drives. They struggled with turnovers, giving Needles extra possessions and opportunities for more points.
Laughlin’s Diego Trujillo, Kainoa Keahilihau, Coda Abatti and Tyler Benton tried to carry the load, helping give the Cougars some rushing yards. Quarterback Andrew Braaksma also chipped in, using his legs to earn a first down late in the game.
Laughlin Coach Walt Hemingway said the offensive line needs to get better. Laughlin also struggled with tackling and combined with Needles’ speed and power it spelt disaster for the Cougars, he added.
Laughlin is a young team and they will improve, he said. He was happy there didn’t appear to be any serious injuries and his team can learn from the experience, he added.
Needles Coach Matt Fromelt appeared pleased with his team’s overall performance. He said both the offense and defense did their jobs. Special teams also put in a good effort, he continued.
Robert Hancock did suffer an injury in the final seconds of the game and Fromelt said he’s hoping it’s not too serious.
Needles’ junior varsity will face the Dust Devils on Thursday, Sept. 22 at 6 p.m. at River Valley. Varsity will take on Mountain View at 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23 on Branigan Field.