ATWATER -- In a game in which momentum shifted continuously, Pitman High was facing a turning point early in the second half.
Atwater had recovered its onside kick to start the second half and was 4 yards from tying the score.
But the Falcons never got those 4 yards. Pitman's defense tightened, and stopped the Falcons on downs. Then the Pride drove 96 yards for the decisive score with Brent Nelle running it in from seven yards out.
There were more scores, but Pitman won the important Central California Conference game 28-21 on Frdiay night at Falcon Field.
"Too many turnovers, too many points left on the field," Falcons head coach Bob Valladao said. "I thought we did a good job of being physical and fighting to the very end, but we made too many mistakes. Pitman was the better team tonight."
The Pride never trailed, capitalizing on a first-quarter punt that hit an Atwater player that gave the Pride the ball at the Falcon 25.
Cody Brackett ran in a 1-yard score four plays later to make it 7-0.
Pitman (6-1, 1-1 CCC) doubled its lead when Wyatt Clapper found a wide open Brennan Hauser with a 23-yard play-action pass in the second quarter.
Atwater (5-2, 1-1 CCC) needed just four plays to answer. Matt Parker (4 catches, 103 yards) gave the Falcons a first-and-goal with a 49-yard catch and Duran found Cory Maxwell for a 5-yard TD pass to make it 14-7 at the half.
"Two chances inside the 10 and we got nothing," Valladao said. "You can't do that against good teams and expect to win."
Still, Atwater never went away.
The teams exchanged a flurry of scores to start the fourth quarter.
Duran (16-28 for 206 yards, 3 TDs and 2 INTs) found Joe Flores in the corner of the end zone with a 31-yard strike. Hauser countered with a 56-yard TD reception three plays later.