After the ball sailed through the goal posts and all the celebrations finally ended,
figured he would be in demand.
The local newspapers. Maybe a small radio station or two. They would all want a few minutes with the senior kicker from Carson (Carson City, Nev.)
who booted a 64-yard, game-winning field goal.
"I knew it would be a big story around here," Pacheco said.
He just had no idea how big.
Pacheco's kick on Oct. 1 against Bishop Manogue (Reno, Nev.) made national news, with stories appearing in print and online publications across the country, and videos of his long-range boot popping up on several websites. In the past week and a half, he has fielded numerous interview requests, including three from radio stations located on the East Coast.
Everybody, it seems, wants to speak to Pacheco.
"I've got a couple of friends who keep me in my place, which is good. I need it," Pacheco said. "I'm just trying to let everything be normal. You've got to be humble about stuff and that's what I'm doing."
Pacheco's kick, which admittedly was aided by a strong breeze and the approximately 4,500-foot elevation in Reno, is tied for the fifth-longest in high school history, according to the National Federation of State High School Associations record book. It is also the second-longest in Nevada history, trailing only the 68-yarder by Dirk Borgognone of Reno in 1985, which stands as the national record.
In addition, Pacheco is the third kicker in Northern Nevada this season to make a field goal of more than 50 yards, joining Esteban Bravo
of Sparks (58 yards) and Anthony Silva
of Reed (Sparks), who connected on a 50-yard kick.
"Obviously the kick making national news brought Austin in the limelight, which is neat to see because it was one of the most amazing things I've seen, in a sports sense," Carson coach Blair Roman said. "A lot of people think I'm crazy, but I felt like he had a chance to make it. Call it a weird intuition."
Pacheco hit four straight from 55 yards in warmups and he put four of his kickoffs through the uprights during the game. So with the Senators facing a fourth-and-13 and the score deadlocked at 24 with 27 seconds remaining, Roman thought, "Why not?"
"It was worth doing it," Roman said. "Worst-case scenario, it's a touchback."
Pacheco, who missed wind-blown 47- and 50-yard attempts to the right earlier, hit an absolute laser that ensured there wouldn't be a block. And it was aimed exactly where Pacheco wanted, allowing the wind to push it through the uprights with plenty of room to spare.
"It probably would have been good from 70," Roman said.
"I really went out there with nothing to lose and just went out swinging," Pacheco said. "I knew I hit it pretty flush. Once I saw the wind take it to the right, that's when I knew it was in. I learned from it. I played it right where I wanted to play it."
Still, Pacheco's favorite kick came Friday when he battled through cramps to nail a last-second, 42-yard kick that gave the Senators (4-1) a 31-29 victory over rival Douglas (Minden, Nev.).
"That's our first team goal and it's kind of cool we accomplished it," said Pacheco, who also threw for a touchdown on a halfback option play to give Carson a 28-21 lead with a little more than 5 minutes to play. "That meant more to me than the 64-yard field goal, for sure."
Roman was also more impressed with the kick against Douglas, considering the pressure involved and the fact Carson trailed 29-28.
"We ran a perfect two-minute drill," Roman said. "The game wasn't tied, we were down one (point). Against Manogue we had nothing to lose. I think that was a much tougher kick."
Pacheco had been drawing interest from nearby Nevada along with San Diego State and Northern Arizona, and Pacheco said he heard from Utah after making the headline-grabbing kick.
"I've talked to a couple coaches but there hasn't been a big significant difference," Pacheco said. "There's always some sort of college that will want me so I'm not worried about college right now."
Roman said he hopes the publicity Pacheco has received helps the 6-foot, 170-pounder draw more attention from college coaches.
"I personally feel he has a Division I leg," Roman said. "He spends a lot of time in his offseason, after practice, before practice, working on kicking. Austin puts in a lot of time and his hard work was rewarded, which is good to see."