Murrieta Valley scores big win over Vista Murrieta

Lika Palmer (22) ran for 180 yards in leading Murrieta Valley to victory over Vista Murrieta. Photo by Cheryl Burke By Aaron Rachman ...

Lika Palmer (22) ran for 180 yards in leading Murrieta Valley to victory over Vista Murrieta.
Photo by Cheryl Burke

By Aaron Rachman

Lika Palmer ran for 180 yards and 3 touchdowns Friday night to lead Murrieta Valley High School to a 42-37 victory over crosstown rival Vista Murrieta, handing Vista its first league loss since 2008.

The Nighthawks, who improved their record to 4-2 overall, were the last team to defeat Vista Murrieta in league play -- 35 league games ago.

Vista Murrieta (0-1, 4-2) held a 30-28 lead entering the fourth quarter before Palmer ran 46 yards for a touchdown and a 35-30 Nighthawks lead. On the next possession, Vista Murrieta was driving when a lost fumble was recovered by Murrieta Valley's Trevor Whitehead. Two minutes later, Palmer ran 9 yards for another score and a 42-30 lead.

Vista Murrieta came back with a quick touchdown drive that took only 37 seconds, with Javelin Guidry taking it in from 18 yards and cutting the lead (after the PAT) to 42-37. Guidry replaced Cole Dubots, who left with a shoulder injury.

With two minutes to go in the game, Murrieta Valley went for it on 4th and 10 at the Vista 25-yard line and the pass was incomplete. Vista got the ball back and was driving but quarterback Karson Greeley's pass fell incomplete pass on 4th and 2 to give the Nighthawks the win.

"He's a gutty competitor," Murrieta Valley coach George Wilson said about Palmer. "He only has one speed, and that's a million miles an hour."

Wilson also praised the play of his quarterback, Hank Bachmeier, who passed for 156 yards and a touchdown.

"Last year was a great learning experience for him as a freshman, so that really helped him this year," Wilson said. "He kind of knew what to expect and he was much more composed. He's confident."

Vista coach David Olson was obviously disappointed with the outcome.

"I'll have to watch the film," Olson said. "There's a lot of emotion in this game. We didn't necessarily handle our emotions the way we should've.

"We turned the ball over too many times. That's something we haven't done all year."

Murrieta Mayor Randon Lane took part in the game's opening coin flip (left).

Vista next week plays at Murrieta Mesa and Murrieta Valley plays at Chaparral.

Murrieta Valley quarterback Hank Bachmeier prepares to hand off during Friday night's game.
Photo by Cheryl Burke

Cole Dubots picks up yardage before leaving Friday's game with an injury.
Photo by Cheryl Burke

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Vista Murrieta High School 3352970828504440838

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