Vidovic carries Hohenfels past Aviano
Aviano's Daniel Dinges and Ryan Perran attempted to block a field goal by Hohenfels during a game Saturday at Aviano Air Base, Italy. Hohenfels won 41-22.
Stars and Stripes
AVIANO AIR BASE, Italy – Heading into Saturday’s game, Hohenfels football coach Larry Daffin had plenty of questions about his team.
But the Tigers seemed to have all the answers in their 41-22 win over Aviano.
“We’re a little rusty with the way this week went,” Daffin said. “We didn’t practice two days, which made me happy with how we played.”
Junior running back David Vidovic doesn’t appear to need any more practice.
“He’s a solid back, a strong runner and a good player,” Daffin said of Vidovic, who rushed for 198 yards and three scores and caught one touchdown pass for 79 yards.
Vidovic, an All-Europe selection last year, carried the ball four times for 30 yards in the team’s opening drive, including the first score. He wasn’t the only ball carrier, though. Shelby Atkinson and A.J. Day combined for 15 yards on the drive.
The Tigers were back on the scoreboard when Hohenfels’ Jeantony Saintmeusa grabbed a 6-yard pass thrown by quarterback Clayton Pinheiro.
Aviano’s third possession was short lived after Hohenfels’ Marcus Dudley Jr. intercepted the ball and ran it back for a 45-yard touchdown, making the score 19-0.
Then Aviano’s Jamal Thomas decided to make some noise, putting the Saints’ on the scoreboard for their first touchdown with a 10-yard run. Thomas eventually caught 11 passes for 97 yards.
Thomas’ touchdown didn’t go unchallenged, though. Vidovic returned with a second score, putting the Tigers up 26-6.
Aviano put enough pressure on the Tigers to thwart two extra point attempts in the first half.
“For as young and new as we are, were kind of learning on the job,” Aviano head coach Rick Dahlstrom said. “We’re doing a lot of good things though.”
The second-half started a little shaky for Hohenfels when the kickoff seemed to bounce all over the field before the Tigers eventually recovered after a series of scrambles on the 42-yard line. The shakiness soon wore off after Vidovic ran for a 58-yard touchdown.
Vidovic ran 79 yards to score to open the fourth, giving the Tigers a 35-point lead after the extra point.
Aviano returned to the end zone two more times before the end of the game.
Daniel Dinges caught a short pass and tiptoed into the end zone, which was promptly followed by Marcus Brown grabbing a 25-yard touchdown from quarterback Mike Trujillo, who completed both of the two-point conversions and threw for a total of 257 yards during the game.
“Aviano showed heart and didn’t give up,” Daffin said. “I have to take my hat off to them, they’re going to get better throughout the season.”