Dimond flag football team keeps its perfect record

Jeremy Peters

It had to happen eventually.

The Dimond flag football team surrendered its first points of the season Wednesday at Tom Huffer Sr. Stadium in Chugiak, where the Lynx remained undefeated with a 28-6 Cook Inlet Conference win over East.

East's lone touchdown forged a 6-6 tie near the end of the first quarter, when East's Sierra Rosenzweig recovered a bobbled punt return and took it to the house from 40 yards out.

"It was really cool," Rosenzweig said. "I was really impressed with myself and my team."

The play was a rare one in which Dimond's Vanessa Tufaga attempted to secure a bouncing football. The ball bounced off Tufaga's hand and, had it hit the ground, would have been a dead ball. Instead, the ball hit Rosenzweig in stride and she capitalized on her momentum.

"That was my fault," said Tufaga, who more than made up for her mistake with a game-high 94 rushing yards and three rushing touchdowns. "(Rosenzweig) came in super fast and took the ball from us."

The East touchdown won't sit well with the Lynx in future practices, Tufaga said, because they take a great pride in pitching shutouts. Coming into Wednesday's game, Dimond outscored its opponents 134-0 in four games.

East fell to 1-4 and Dimond improved to 5-0 with its 22nd straight win. The Lynx went 17-0 last season on their march to a third CIC title.

East played tough defense throughout the second quarter and maintained the 6-6 tie until Tufaga slashed in for a 3-yard touchdown with four seconds to play in the half, giving the Lynx a 14-6 lead.

Tufaga kept it rolling in the second half, showing off her blazing speed on a 51-yard touchdown sprint down the left side of the field and giving Dimond a 21-6 lead with 9:26 to play in the third quarter. Tufaga was at it again in the third quarter's final minute, breaking away on a 6-yard run for the game's final touchdown.

"East has a good defense," Tufaga said. "We really pulled together and made things happen. As a team, we had to communicate more."

Lauren Hines, who finished with three catches for 35 yards, scored Dimond's first touchdown on a 14-yard reception from quarterback Tara Thompson. Malia Lyken added 82 rushing yards to the Dimond attack and snagged an interception.

Sylvia Evern led the Dimond defense with six pulls, and Tufaga chipped in four pulls.

Reach Jeremy Peters at jpeters@adn.com or 257-4335.

Cook Inlet Conference

Flag football standings

Team W L

Dimond 5 0

Service 3 0

South 3 1

West 3 2

Bartlett 2 3

Chugiak 1 3

East 1 4

Eagle River 0 4