Quarterback Coach Brandon Hawkins speaks to senior and quarterback Kevin Rozar (2) during the second quarter of the game. PHOTO BY SASHA LOPEZ
As Bonita Vista High’s varsity football team ran across the parallel lines of cheerleaders cheering them on, they hope to end their 12-game losing streak from the 2017-18 school year. On Friday, Aug. 17, at DeVore Stadium, the Barons were shutout 0-35 by Saint Augustine High School’s football team, carrying the losing streak into the 2018 season.
“The guys play with a lot of heart, [they] play for each other. [They’re] consistent, and just do their job, execute. I want them to play fair every single time they touch the field whether that be in practice or in games,” Head Varsity Football Coach Sam Kirkland said.
By the end of the first quarter, Saints junior tight end and defensive end Michael Ambagtsheer (45) had scored a touchdown, leaving the score 0-6 Saints.
“[The Saints are] a really good football program we just played. I thought we really had a chance at moments and we had a lot of things slip away from us,”Kirkland said.
During the second quarter, the Barons had the chance to change the momentum of the game. The Barons displayed glimpses of great defense, causing a turnover at the Saints’ own 7-yard line.
Starting at the Saints’ 7-yard line, the Barons’ next offensive drive had the potential to tie the game, or even take the lead. After a series of completions for the Barons and penalties towards the Saints, the Barons moved the ball to their 6-yard line. On second down, the Barons scored a rushing touchdown, only to be called back due to an illegal formation. On third down, the Barons were unable to score due to an incomplete pass by senior and quarterback Kevin Rozar (2).
“We just got to work on execution on the little things. Once we watch the film we’ll see that we made a lot of mistakes, things that we’ve been going over,” Kirkland said.
On fourth down, a low snap allowed two Saints defenders to block the field goal attempt by BVH junior kicker Cristian Tapia (41). Recovering the blocked field goal, the Saints junior, quarterback and slotback Angelo Peraza (14) returned with an 89-yard run for a touchdown. After a successful 2-point conversion, the score was 0-14 Saints.
“The momentum changed when they got back that touchdown and then blocked the punt,” BVH Special Teams Coach Carl Martin said.
For the rest of the game, the Saints dominated offensively. Another Saints touchdown in the second quarter by senior and running back Cole Barry (3), a touchdown by sophomore and running back Byron Cardwell (21) in the third quarter and a 63-yard return for a touchdown by senior and linebacker JT Penick (12) in the fourth quarter, resulted in a final score of 0-35.
“We just didn’t execute offensively and defensively, we gave up a lot of plays. We’re gonna come back next week stronger against Madison. We’re gonna take the dub 100 percent,” senior inside linebacker Christopher Jennen (33) said.
Overall, despite having possession for 25:14 minutes, the Barons managed two first downs. In comparison, in 22:46 possession minutes, the Saint had ten first downs and five touchdowns. Despite the loss, Kirkland still has hopes to make it to the Mesa League Playoffs.
“I understand that losing the first game doesn’t mean this season’s over, we just have a lot of work to do. But, we have to learn from those mistakes quickly because we have a really good team coming in here next week,” Kirkland said.