Quarterback Jaymee Luke is the catalyst for Cimarron-Memorial’s flag football team.
And though she accounted for 327 yards of offense to lead the Spartans to a 39-21 win over Green Valley in the Clark County School District flag football championship game Tuesday at Arbor View, it was defensive captain Antoinette Adams who made the play of the game.
With momentum shifting every series and the Gators driving into Cimarron territory on third-and-15 from the 35-yard-line, Adams broke through the line of scrimmage and sacked quarterback Morgan Gibson with 10:33 left.
“Coach told me to blitz, so I got around the center and just focused on locking in on the quarterback’s hips,” Adams said. “I tripped, but as I fell I grabbed her flag. At the time, I didn’t know how big the play was; I was just excited I got her flag for a sack.”
It proved to be a dagger, as the Gators were vividly deflated. Gibson’s pass attempt on fourth down sailed over Jackie Cook’s head, and the Spartans took over from their 35. Cimarron promptly marched downfield and put the game out of reach six plays later, when Luke found De’shan Cambrit for a 16-yard touchdown.
“She’s a captain on defense, she’s a leader on defense, she plays through injuries, and often my direction to the defense is ‘whatever Antoinette says,’ ” Cimarron coach Mark Bailey said. “She calls the plays on the field. She’s definitely more of my voice on the field than I am on defense.”
On offense, Luke led the Spartans again. She completed 15 of 22 passes for 216 yards and rushed for 111 yards on 16 carries. Luke passed for 128 yards and two TDs and rushed for 281 yards and three scores in Monday’s Sunset Region final.
“The outside blitzes were killing us the first few series,” Bailey said. “We made some adjustments, and (Jaymee) is confident in herself and her legs. I think we fixed some things.”
Green Valley shut down the Spartans on their first series, then darted to a 7-0 lead on its first drive when Gibson hit Kayla Anderson on a catch-and-run that went for 36 yards. Cimarron scored on its next two drives and took a 12-7 lead with 4:20 left in the first half.
Gibson and Cook hooked up on an 11-yard TD pass and a 2-point conversion with 26.8 seconds left in the half, and the Gators took a 15-12 lead into halftime.
“We knew they were good, and they did shock us (early),” Luke said. “They did some stuff they didn’t do the game before (against Boulder City in the Sunrise final). We figured out how to play around that, and we just executed our game plan.”
Tiana Callejo and Logan DeLong were key components on Cimarron’s offense. Callejo finished with 19 rushing yards and a TD and caught three passes for 41 yards and two touchdowns. DeLong caught seven passes for 103 yards.
Gibson completed 13 of 18 passes for 197 yards and two TDs for the Gators. Anderson rushed for 43 yards on seven carries and caught four passes for 56 yards. Tamara Grieves led Green Valley receivers with five catches for 80 yards.