The Railroaders fell, 48-20, to Fallon after the Greenwave raced out to a 27-7 first half lead on Friday.
Fallon improves to 5-0 in the Northern Division I-A, while Sparks falls to 0-6.
The Greenwave needed only five plays to strike first, a drive capped by a 1-yard touchdown run from Tyson Ernst. Sparks, however, countered with a score of its own, albeit with a time consuming drive.
Instead of relying on the arm of quarterback Geo Vasquez, the Railroaders pounded Fallon’s defense with a solid run game. Nick Vandever carried the ball five times for 30 yards, while Mario Guadron tied the game with a 2-yard TD plunge.
“We haven’t been playing with any confidence,” Sparks coach Rob Kittrell said. “We saw a spark in our guys’ eyes tonight. That was good to see. This is by far the best we’ve played all season. I’m proud of them.”
But Fallon’s offense countered with a four-play drive, highlighted by the running of Trent Tarner. The speedy back carried the ball three times for 51 yards — including a 16-yard TD run — and quarterback Morgan Dirickson hit Micah Manning for a 54-yard gain to propel the offense.
Sparks’ luck, though, bounced in favor of Fallon on the Railroaders’ next possession. Vasquez’s pass bounced off his receiver’s hands and into the waiting arms of Skye Barton, who raced 45 yards for the score.
Fallon capped the quarter when Dirickson hit Manning on a 36-yard strike.
“We’re not good enough to have mistakes like that,” Kittrell said.
A fumble by Guadron stopped an impressive drive that took nearly eight minutes off the clock to open the third quarter. The Railroaders’ running game gashed the Fallon defense, but Guadron was unable to control the ball after a completion from Vasquez.
Fallon’s big-play offense responded. Wide receiver Dylan Tedford took a middle screen pass from Dirickson and ran through the middle of the Sparks defense for a 53-yard score and a commanding 34-7 lead.
The two teams traded touchdowns in the fourth quarter as Vasquez hit Cedric Sanchez for a 55-yard TD with 6:13 remaining. The ball slipped through the hands of two Fallon defenders before settling in Sanchez’s grasp, and the junior outran the defense for the score.
Sparks’ final score was a 60-yard TD strike from Arturo Herrera to Sanchez to cut the lead to 48-20.
“I don’t like losing ... but I’m very proud of our effort,” Kittrell said. “We really did a good job of gaining positive yards on first down.”
Up next for Sparks is a home matchup against Lowry (5-1, 4-1 DI-A) at 7 p.m. on Friday.