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Abarca quite a catch in Golden Valley loss to Pitman

With the game long out of reach, Golden Valley managed to close a tumultuous season with a happy note on Friday night.

As the crowd and sideline chanted "One more catch," senior receiver Adrian Abarca faked a quick "in route" and cut up field as the Pitman corner bit on the fake.

Rey Rivas lofted a ball towards the corner of the end zone, which Abarca cradled around the 5-yard line before being brought down at the Pitman 1.

The catch gave Abarca four on the night and a new Golden Valley single-season record of 43.

The accomplishment helped take the sting out of 46-14 loss to Pitman (4-1 CCC, 7-2) at Don Odishoo Field.

"It meant a lot, having everyone cheering and knowing my whole team was pulling for me to break it," Abarca said. "We didn't win every game this season, but we kept our heads up and stuck together as a team."

Abarca hauled in the passes on four consecutive offensive plays in the fourth quarter.

The first was a deep pass from Rivas down the right sideline which he broke for an 80-yard score.

The record might have fallen a little sooner, but GV starting quarterback Matt Martin was knocked out on the second series of the game.

It was a forgettable final game for the senior who only attempted two passes -- the first of which was intercepted and returned 48 yards for a touchdown -- before exiting with an ankle injury on his second one.

"Let's just say I'm hurting more emotionally than I am physically right now," Martin said. "Win or lose, we just wanted to play them tough.

"It just wasn't our night."

With Martin out of the game, an aggressive Pitman defense ignored the passing game and stuffed the box with as many as 10 players at times.

As a result, Golden Valley's offense produced just 15 total yards in the first half.

"With Matt back there throwing the ball, we've been able to compete against some good teams this season," said GV coach Jon Betschart whose team finished 1-5 in the CCC and 1-9 overall.

"Without him, it's tough."

Pitman's offense had no such troubles.

Five different players scored first-half touchdowns as Pitman racked up 300 total yards on 27 plays and built a 46-0 lead at the half.

Pitman's Marcus Sanders rushed for 110 yards and a touchdown on six carries, and also hauled in a 49-yard touchdown pass.

Golden Valley's Ralph Vasquez rounded out the scoring, punching the ball in from a yard out with one minute to play.

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