ANTELOPE Ñ A much-improved defense from last weekÕs season opener Ñ and another strong effort by the passing game Ñ highlighted the Davis Junior Midget White teamÕs effort in a 32-12 loss to powerful Center on Saturday.
The game got off to a rough start for Davis as Center intercepted quarterback Willie HallÕs first pass of the game, then scored a touchdown on a long run on the ensuing possession.
But Hall battled back, completing 18-of-32 passes on the day for 175 yards, two touchdowns and just the one interception.
After giving up the initial touchdown, the DevilsÕ defense stiffened for the remainder of the first half. Charlie Stephenson led the charge with seven tackles. Christian McCoy and Greg Eurby added four each, while Andrew Pilon had three and Miguel Sedillo, Miles Wong and Bradley Carpenter had two each.
The defense also forced three turnovers Ñ interceptions by Gabi Fong and Joshua Steen and a fumble recovery by Cole Skaggs.
Meanwhile the offense closed the gap to 7-6 when Hall connected with slot receiver Solomon Biers-Ariel for a 17-yard touchdown. Biers-Ariel, who scored for the second week in a row, finished the day with four catches for 48 yards and the score. DavisÕ leading receiver was Fong with five catches for 65 yards.
Davis put together a long drive in the third quarter that ended on CenterÕs one-yard line as tight end Skaggs was tackled just short of the goal line on fourth down after catching a short pass. Still, Davis did manage to get into the end zone one more time. In the fourth quarter, wide receiver Nathan Hassid capped off a drive with a 13-yard catch on a corner route.
Running back Brenden Tull was a force with 44 yards receiving, combining with fullback Tony Munoz and Wildcat quarterback Mason Chupka for 40 yards on the ground.
The offensive line, led by center Will Spivey Ñ and the inspired play of Theo Farnum, David Yo, David Cobar and Sedillo Ñ played a stellar game for the second week in a row.
Special teamsÕ highlights for Davis included the play of punter/kicker Skaggs and the hustle of Stephenson, who ran down a kick returner. preventing a touchdown.
Davis begins league play next week at Casa Robles.
ÔDÕ for Pee Wees
The name of the game was defense this past Saturday as the Davis Junior Blue Devils Pee Wee White team clashed helmets with the Center Cougars. The boysÕ defense led to the Cougars failing to score even a single point during the first and fourth quarters.
Unfortunately, a few blitzes by the Cougars mid-game resulted in a 32-0 loss for the locals.
Ethan Ramos, Ronald Lewis, Max Woodland and Bo Van Court were on their toes throughout the game, recovering Center fumbles that stopped opposition drives.
Throughout the first and second quarters, defense was on high burner with Bernard Cardenas, Nicolas LaVergne, Mohammaed Mohammed, Aleksei Kaufman, Cole Skoggs and Jalen Rosario among the linemen, performing valiantly and preventing the Cougars from scoring an extra point on their first touchdown. It was a good thing the Cougars were wearing their padding because Dedrick Underwood, Joey Sattari, Maximilian Seed, Gabriel Garcia and
Gabriel Franco were not afraid to put them down with some of the best tackling on the day.
During the third quarter Shann Nahal, Charlie Whitecomb were at the top of their game, while Beau Lambrecht, Joseph Cady, Patrick Stodden, Cyree Jones and Andrew Kimmel were among those on a great goal-line stand.
Although the Cougars got a few points in during the third, they failed to get past the Davis Defensive Machine, consisting of Jack Henry Grote, Joey Sattari, Miles Zabala, Patrick Hendershott, Nathan Stoltz, Alexander Martinez and Mark Studer Ñ among others Ñ during the last quarter of the game.
After the game, coach Underwood confirmed the thoughts which were running through the crowd: “Defense was amazing… The kids played hard and didn’t give up.”
Junior Pee Wees plug away
Coaches Dan Kimmel and Santiago Gonzalez lauded their squad for Òplaying with heartÓ after a tough loss to the Center Cougars, 27-0.
Playing in Division IV, the Junior Pee Wees played up against AntelopeÕs D-III squad.
The Blue Devils, led by captains Ian Thompson, Aaron Ramirez and Chris Cardenas, played well on both sides of the ball against the physically bigger Cougars.
After winning the coin toss and electing to receive, the locals displayed their offensive capabilities with runs from Isaiah Cady, Santiago Gonzalez Ñ with the highlight being a 68-yard sprint from Ryan Kimmel.
Defensively, the Junior Blue Devils struggled to find their rhythm in the first half giving up 21 points.
After the half, a refocused Davis squad limited the Cougars to just six points with a big extra-point stop from Josiah Roa. Additional outstanding defensive stops by Aiden Barker, Hall Triplet IV, Cody Fields, Jackson McNece and William Whouie proved that the Davis squad had come ready to play.
Other notable contributions on both ends of the field came from Junior Pee Wees Nate Fechner, Aiden Grow, Colin Grow, Ryan Wright and Tristan Wollrich. Coaches felt that second-half performance showed that the Devils were not intimidated by the depth and size of their D-III opponent.
NOTES: The Midget White team did not play Saturday, but were awarded a victory because its opponent, Center, had to forfeit the contest.