Wildcats silence the Thunder 47-0 in the freshman Quarry Bowl

The+Wildcat+offense+lines+up+at+Rocklin%27s+seven+yard+line+to+start+their+play.+Photo+by+Kristen+El+Sayegh.

The Wildcat offense lines up at Rocklin’s seven yard line to start their play. Photo by Kristen El Sayegh.

Lined up under center Thursday night in the biggest game of the year was Dominic Souto, filling in for injured starting quarterback, Preston Eklund. But this didn’t slow the Wildcats down, as the freshman football team beat Rocklin 47-0 in the 5th annual Quarry Bowl game on Sept. 11 at Rocklin.

Souto, taking on the responsibility of leading his team, was relieved that his running back Jason Sanchez was there to help him out. Sanchez ran for three touchdowns in just the first half of this game against the Thunder.

His first of the night happened within four minutes of the opening kickoff. Sanchez trucked into the endzone for two yards and six points. Kicker Jayden Patel successfully made the extra point, Wildcats going up 7-0.

Less than three minutes later, No. 20 was at it again. Sanchez ran for a seven yard touchdown, followed by Souto throwing a two-point conversion pass to give his team the lead by 15.

Sanchez was done for the night after his third touchdown early in the second quarter. After the extra point, the Wildcats extended their lead 22-0.

Taking over for Sanchez at running back was No. 3 Mark Clark. Clark didn’t fall short of the standards Sanchez set, running the ball into the endzone for 22 yards. Patel’s failed kick didn’t hinder the team’s domination over the Thunder, 28-0.

The second half of the game followed the same pattern as the first, the Wildcats never failing to execute.

Souto’s 16-yard quarterback keeper set up Keanu Wilkinson’s three yard touchdown run.

After the defense forced a turnover on downs, Azrael Rodriguez ran for 44 yards, taken down short of the goal line, but close enough for Souto to connect with Ben Sopinski on a 14 yard touchdown pass.

After Michael Hamp intercepted Rocklin’s Chase Webb’s pass, he stayed on the field to take over at quarterback for Souto.

Hamp fed the ball to Rodriguez who ran for his second touchdown of the night, what would be the seventh and final touchdown for the Wildcats.

Rocklin’s team did not come close to scoring, even with Whitney’s backups playing the majority of the second half.

Head Coach Bret Hunter said he was thrilled with his team’s success against their cross-town rivals. His new, temporary quarterback satisfied his expectations for the game.

“We really wanted to focus on establishing our strong run game, so a lot of what we asked [Dominic] to do was just hand the ball off, and he did an excellent job at that,” Hunter said.

The main target of Souto’s handoffs was obviously Sanchez, who his coach also had nothing but good things to say about.

“When [Sanchez] gets the ball he loves to run downhill,” Hunter said. “He has strong legs, he’s a very powerful runner, and he’s got a good offensive line in front of him.”

Coach Hunter wasn’t the only one to give credit to the offensive line; Souto also gave his glory to the guys up front.

“All props go to our linemen because they blocked the heck out of Rocklin’s defense. It wasn’t even a fair matchup. The entire game was 10 yard play after 10 more yards,” Souto said.

Sanchez could only agree with his coach and quarterback about the linemen’s importance in the game.

“They worked hard this week so the running backs could practice finding the holes and getting upfield,” Sanchez said.

The JV and varsity football teams play Rocklin tonight, hoping to match the success of the freshman team.

 

by RYLEA GILLIS