As Clovis High School celebrated the return of homegrown Olympian Jenna Prandini and crowned homecoming royalty, the Cougars football team more than did its part to make it a festive night at Lamonica Stadium.
The Bee’s Central Section top-ranked Clovis exploded for 28 second-quarter points and rolled to a 58-17 victory over unranked Centennial on Friday, moving the Cougars to 5-0 ahead of their Tri-River Athletic Conference opener against Clovis East on Oct. 7. Clovis has a bye next week.
“I’m really proud – it was a team victory. Everybody played well as a unit,” Cougars coach Rich Hammond said. “It’s tremendous when you get the opportunity to play a lot of guys. It didn’t really matter who got in, they just got in and executed and did the things they are supposed to.
“And that’s great going into a bye because everyone shows up every week and works hard. You need everyone to get the deal done. And so when they all get to play, it really builds a positive for us. I think we’ve become a better team from Week 1 to Week 5, and hopefully we can carry that into league play.”
I think we’ve become a better team from week one to week five, and hopefully we can carry that into league play.
Clovis coach Rich Hammond on his team’s 5-0 start
Everything went right for Clovis in the second quarter after its only mistake of the first half, an interception of Trey Lake off a tipped pass that led to a 30-yard field goal by the Golden Hawks’ Brenden Rancka.
Clovis responded on its next drive, getting a double pass from Mason Varner to Cole Roberts for 34 yards to set the stage for Samir Allen’s 14-yard touchdown that made it 14-3.
Clovis made key plays all night. Lake hit Tyson Fraser for a 16-yard touchdown on a fourth-and-1 play, Mason Rice returned a stripped fumble caused by Quinn Vosmera for a 35-yard touchdown and Nash Vidmar scored on a 1-yard run out of the wildcat formation as the Cougars grew their lead to 35-3 by halftime.
“We were just clicking on all aspects of the game,” Lake said. “We passed the ball good, we ran the ball phenomenal and we got most of our starters out by the start of the second half. Our defense did good, we got a big kick return. Everything clicked for us and that’s big going into the bye week. We’re playing good football.”
Ruger Wyneken and Troy Zuccarini combined to stop Centennial’s Monte Robinson in the end zone for a safety with 4:16 left in the third quarter, and Allen scored on an 11-yard touchdown run on Clovis’ ensuing possession as the Cougars went ahead 44-3.
Roberts’ 9-yard touchdown run with 10:36 remaining in the fourth put Clovis up 51-10 and started a running clock. Duran Boyd’s 55-yard burst capped the scoring for the Cougars.
“We’ve just got to keep on rolling and doing good,” Wyneken said. “We can’t sleep on anyone. It’s going to be a hard TRAC.”
Before the game, Prandini, a 2011 Clovis graduate who won five state track and field titles as a Cougar, was paraded around the stadium as the homecoming ceremonies’ grand marshal. Prandini placed 10th in the 200-meter dash at the Rio Games.
Clovis 58, Centennial 17
Cl: Clayton Alexander 10 pass from Trey Lake (Jacob Hinrichs kick).
Ce: FG Brenden Rancka 30.
Cl: Samir Allen 14 run (Jacob Hinrichs kick).
Cl: Tyson Fraser 16 pass from Trey Lake (Jacob Hinrichs kick).
Cl: Mason Rice 35 fumble return (Jacob Hinrichs kick).
Cl: Nash V idmar 1 run (Jacob Hinrichs kick).
Cl: team safety.
Cl: Samir Allen 11 run (Jacob Hinrichs kick).
Ce: Hunter Giulietti 44 run (Brenden Rancka kick).
Cl: Cole R oberts 9 run (Jacob Hinrichs kick).
Ce: Monte Robinson 15 pass from Will Alexander (Brenden Rancka kick).
Cl: Duran Boyd 55 run (Jacob Hinrichs kick).
Rushing: Centennial, Monte Robinson 6-6, Cole Beaty 1-(-3), Grafton Williams 12-(-2), Hunter Giulietti 11-88, Jadon Morales 1-2. Clovis, Tyson Fraser 1-4, Cole R oberts 5-67, Trey Lake 2-6, Nash V idmar 10-57, Duran Boyd 3-66, Samir Allen 10-89, Jaden Devore 1-1, Cody Lawrence 1-1.
Passing: Centennial, Will Alexander 5-7-0-83, Grafton Williams 10-25-2-92. Clovis, Mason V arner 1-1-0-45, Trey Lake 5-11-1-91, Payton Mayer 4-6-0-44.
Receiving: Centennial, Joe Horack 1-3, Monte Robinson 2-38, Brady Banuelos 3-46, Zach Hernandez 1-8, Cole Beaty 7-75. Clovis, Mathew Sanchez 1-19, Jaden Devore 1-5, Samir Allen 1-44, Cole R oberts 3-75, Clayton Alexander 1-10, Tyson Fraser 2-21, Houston Sims 1-6.