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Special teams, defense come up big for Tulare Western

Strong special teams and defensive play fueled Tulare Western on Friday, as the 19th-ranked Mustangs defeated Hanford West, 53-19, at Bob Mathias Stadium.

The Mustangs scored two defensive touchdowns and two special teams touchdowns in the contest.

Elijah Alonzo recovered a fumble and returned it 22 yards for a touchdown and teammate Daniel Martinho matched it with a 25-yard fumble recovery returned for a touchdown.

In second quarter Jordan Padilla returned a punt 60 yards for a touchdown in what was a close game at the time.

The Mustangs final touchdown came on an 83-yard kickoff return for a touchdown by Casey Bernardo.

The Huskies only trailed 6-0 after the first quarter, but the second quarter did them in, as the Mustangs outscored them 33-7 in the second frame.

Mustang quarterback Kobe Portillo completed 19-of-24 passes for 234 yards, a touchdown and no interceptions.

He had four receivers with at least 40 receiving yards—Kimo Malo with three catches for 41 yards, Rudy Vasquez with three catches for 54 yards, Alex Wright with three catches for 55 yards and a touchdown and Jesse Macias with seven receptions for 73 yards.

Despite the loss, the Salaam brothers both had pretty productive games.

Jamal completed 20-of-32 passes for 211 yards, a touchdown and an interception, plus he rushed for a touchdown. Jameel caught five passes for 76 yards and a touchdown.

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