Eighth-ranked Buchanan High, in a physical pounding under first-year coach Matt Giordano, bolted to a 28-0 first-half lead and was never threatened in a 28-17 nonleague win over No. 2 Bullard on Thursday night at McLane Stadium.
The Bears, behind the combined 147 yards rushing from Zach Presno and Trevor Ervin, outgained the Knights 211-55 in the first half en route to improving to 2-0.
Bullard (1-1) scored with 24 seconds remaining on a 1-yard run by quarterback Jack Taylor.
Rarely, in coach Donnie Arax’s 17-year career, have the Knights been knocked off their collective feet as they were in the first half as Buchanan plowed away behind tackles Shawn Barron and Theo Meyer, center Ardie Burton, guards David Robles and Noah Salcido, fullback Anthony Montalvo and tight end Keenan Wolf.
Bears quarterback Nolan Leforge, adding to his team’s physical presence at 6-foot-3 and 220, showed excellent field command and completed two third-and-long passes, setting up Presno’s third touchdown – a 1-yarder for the 28-0 lead with 2:38 left in the first half.
Presno, also a factor at middle linebacker and a Bee All-Star catcher for the school’s national top-ranked baseball team last spring, finished with 108 yards on 23 carries. Ervin, however, didn’t return after a 27-yard gain early in the second quarter. His left knee was iced in the second half.
Linemen Ryan Bacon, Montalvo and Logan Fogg, and linebacker Wolf also stood out on a defense now coordinated by Mike Vogt, who was a head coach for a combined 27 years at Buchanan, Mt. Whitney and Reedley.
Vogt’s 2000 team won the Bears’ only section title. It was led by Giordano, who would ultimately play nine years in the NFL as a safety.
No. 4 Clovis West 44, No. 13 Centennial 7 – The Golden Eagles took the suspense out of this clash of Division I heavyweights in the first half, riding Adrian Martinez’s four touchdown passes and a defense that limited the Golden Hawks to 17 yards while registering four sacks, two fumble recoveries and an interception at Veterans Memorial Stadium.
After a sluggish start that saw Clovis West turn the ball over on its first two possessions, Martinez directed a nine-play, 79-yard drive that culminated in his 19-yard scoring pass to Rodney Wright.
The Golden Eagles would pour it on in the second quarter, with Martinez firing touchdowns of 38 yards to Miguel Junior Rodriguez, 26 yards to Wright and 10 yards to Diego Cruz, while also getting a 3-yard touchdown run from Jeremiah Ellison and a safety when Centennial’s punter stepped out of the end zone to build a 37-0 lead at half.
Clovis West put it away by scoring on the first possession of the second half, with Ellison’s 4-yard touchdown run giving the Golden Eagles a 44-0 lead and bringing an end to the night for Martinez, who finished 10 of 17 for 197 yards.
With the clock running under the mercy rule in the fourth quarter, Centennial averted the shutout on Monte Robinson’s 1-yard touchdown run.
Mission Oak 42, Madera 41 – The Hawks stopped Madera’s 2-point conversion attempt to take the lead with 3:29 remaining and ran out the clock from there to secure new Mission Oak coach David Flores’ first victory.
Jose Palomera rushed for 220 yards and three scores for Mission Oak, which rushed for 468 yards. Quarterback Seth Logan scored twice and ran for 160.
Madera’s Eric Escobar had 161 yards and two touchdowns.
Farmersville 33, Granite Hills 23 – Jeremiah Galaviz and Victor Castrejon were nearly unstoppable as Galaviz surpassed 300 yards passing for a second straight game while hooking up with Castrejon for four touchdowns as the host Aztecs beat the Grizzlies.
A week after racking up 390 yards in 52-27 loss to Strathmore, Galaviz was 14 of 31 for 308 yards – with Castrejon catching seven passes for 246.
Sierra Pacific 30, Hoover 14 – Miguel Wharton, Phillips Jackson and Gerod Magee accounted for 344 yards on the ground and the Golden Bears defense racked up eight sacks in a victory against the visiting Patriots in Hanford.