Waitsburg Elite air attack downs Matadors, 34-19

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CALDWELL, Idaho — The Waitsburg Elite minor league football team avenged last season’s opening loss to the Idaho Matadors with a 34-19 victory here Saturday night.

“We started our season off right in our season opener,” Elite offensive coordinator Johnny Brown said. “We lost to this team in our opener last year at home, so it was satisfying to beat them at their house this time.”

George Martinez hooked up with Brandon Mitchell for 280 yards and four touchdowns.

Martinez racked up 415 yards through the air, and found Michael Najera for another 105 yards and a touchdown.

“Our offense was highlighted by George Martinez’s laser arm and Brandon Mitchell’s amazing hands,” Brown said.

Mitchell hauled in a 55-yard pass to open scoring in the second quarter, and quickly followed with a 13-yard score as the Elite held a 13-6 halftime lead.

After the break, the Matadors returned a kick 78 yards to tie it up before Najera grabbed a 12-yard Martinez throw as Waitsburg regained the lead.

Mitchell then had 64- and 75-yard TD catches to round out the Elite’s scoring.

The Matadors had a fourth-quarter passing touchdown.

“Our defense held firm for most of the game, only giving up touchdowns on two broken plays,” Brown said. “The defense was anchored by Layton Brown with six tackles, and solid defensive play all day, and Blake Schwarz who was flying around and had three tackles and a key interception and 22-yard return in the third quarter to keep the Matadors from tying the game.”

The Elite have their home opener at 5 p.m. Saturday against the Palouse Thunder at Waitsburg High’s football field. Admission at the gate is $8 adults, $6 for ages 15 and under, and ages 0-5 free. Tickets purchased at website waitsburgelite.com are $6 adults, $3 15 and under, and season passes are $40 at the gate, $20 via the website.

Waitsburg 34, Idaho 19

Waitsburg 0 13 7 14 — 34

Idaho 0 6 7 6 — 19

Waits — B. Mitchell 55 pass from G. Martinez (kick failed).

Waits — B. Mitchell 13 pass from G. Martinez (Solis kick).

Idaho — 45 pass (kick failed).

Idaho — 78 kick return (kick made).

Waits — Najera 12 pass from G. Martinez (Solis kick).

Waits — B. Mitchell 64 pass from G. Martinez (Solis kick).

Idaho — 58 pass (run failed).

Waits — B. Mitchell 75 pass from G. Martinez (Solis kick).

Waitsburg Idaho

First downs NA NA

Rushes/yards 16-27 NA

Passing yards 415 NA

Passes (att-comp-int) 33-20-0 NA

Punts 3-32 NA

Fumbles-lost 0-0 NA

Penalties-yards 7-55 NA

Individual Statistics

RUSHING — Waits: Burgess 6-15, J. Martinez 4-9, Beal 6-3. Idaho: NA.

PASSING — Waits: G. Martinez 20-33-0, 415 yards, 5 touchdowns. Idaho: NA.

RECEIVING — Waits: B. Mitchell 9-280, 4 touchdowns, Najera 7-105, 1 touchdown, Atkinson Jr. 2-22, Beal 1-7, J. Martinez 1-2; Idaho: NA.

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