Battle Mountain's Jose Guizar runs down the field after making a catch.
Battle Mountain's Jose Guizar runs down the field after making a catch.
After suffering its first setback in league play the week before, the Battle Mountain High School football team was looking to bounce back Thursday night against and old-time rival and three-time defending state champion in Pershing County.

The Longhorns (6-2 overall, 6-1 Northern 2A) did just that, scoring 16 points in the first three minutes of the contest en route to a 42-6 win and the No. 2 seed in the Northern 2A in the playoffs.

“It was a good way for us to bounce back,” said BMHS coach Mitch Domagala. “We didn’t get off the bus at all in Yerington. Once we did we played OK. Pershing County is always tough to play and you are playing the culture. It was nice to get a win over them.” 

These same two teams will play in the opening round of the playoffs on Friday, Nov. 8, in Battle Mountain.

Momentum quickly shifted in the contest, as Pershing County fumbled on the first play of the game and Battle Mountain turned that into six points, as senior Cody Ostler scored on a 27-yard run on the Longhorns’ first play from scrimmage.

Ostler had 277 yards rushing on 16 carries in his final regular season game at Tim Knight Field. Ostler also caught three passes for 48 yards.

“It was a short senior night for us,” Domagala said. “I am happy Cody had a night like that on senior night.”

Battle Mountain increased its lead to 8-0 a minute later, recording a safety after a bad snap on a punt by Pershing County. Once the Longhorns got the ball back on the ensuing kickoff, Ostler was back in the end zone two plays later on a 43-yard run and 18-0 lead with 9:17 left in the first quarter. Battle Mountain began the drive with a 13-yard pass from Aldo Castellanos to Jose Guizar.

Pershing County continued to sputter on offense, fumbling on its next possession in Battle Mountain territory and later punting late in the opening 12 minutes of play.

Battle Mountain added to its lead early in the second quarter, as Castellanos capped off a 79-yard drive with an 11-yard run to make the score 22-0 with 9:53 left in the first half.

The Mustangs saw yet another drive end with a fumble in Longhorn territory and that translated to six more points for Battle Mountain. Aided by a 24-yard pass to Ostler on third-and-16, the Longhorns drove 7- yards to go in front 28-0 after a 4-yard run by the senior running back.

Pershing County looked to put points on the board at the end of the first half, but an interception by Castellanos in the end zone ended the Mustang drive. Pershing County had four turnovers in the first half.

After a strong showing in the first half, Battle Mountain came out flat in the third quarter, turning the ball over on downs and punting. Pershing County was able to cut the deficit to 26-6 with 4:13 left in the third quarter on a 5-yard run by Colton Wanner on fourth-and-one.

“We came out sluggish and it goes back to Pershing County’s culture,” added the coach. “They are used to winning and are not going to quit. They will find some way to give you a game. We responded and got things going right again.”

That was as close as the Mustangs got, with the Longhorns adding two touchdowns in the fourth quarter. The first was a 22-yard pass from Castellanos to Ostler and the second was a 10-yard pass to Terrance Fetterly.

Castellanos finished the night 8-of-14 passing for 107 yards and two touchdowns. Fetterly had four catches for 48 yards.

Battle Mountain ends the regular season on Friday night in Incline at 7 p.m.

“It’s a game we can’t take lightly, we have to be ready to play,” Domagala said. “They are fighting for a playoff spot and have a lot to play for. The biggest thing for us to get a win and have no injuries.”

Battle Mountain hosts Pershing County on Friday. Nov. 8, in the first round of the playoffs. Kickoff time has not been set as of press time.

“We knew we were going to see them again,” Domagala said. “I am sure they will be ready to go in a couple of weeks.”