LEADING THE WAY: Steven Barron of Bosco Tech leads the blocking during Thursday’s 35-14 loss to Bishop Montgomery on Thursday. Correspondent photo by Larry Goren/Sports
By Keith Lair, SGVN
SAN GABRIEL — Big plays came at the right time for Bishop Montgomery High School on Thursday night.
The Knights scored four touchdowns of 26 yards or more en route to a 35-14 victory over Bosco Tech in a Del Rey League game at Gabrielino High.
“Give them credit. Those big plays, they killed us,” Bosco Tech coach Chris Shockley said. “Take those away and it was a much closer game.”
It certainly was not the short, grind-it-out type of football that decided the outcome. Because of the defensive play by both teams, neither team ran the ball effectively, although Bosco Tech’s David Fuentes did have 167 yards and two TDs on 32 carries.
It was the Knights, undefeated in league play, and 6-1 overall, who came up with the big plays. Right from the start. Bryan Paredes returned the opening kickoff 96 yards for a touchdown.
“A couple of big plays and we broke it open,” Bishop Montgomery coach Ed Hodgkiss said.
After the Knights stopped the Tigers (1-5, 1-1), Robert Rodgers returned a Fuentes punt 35 yards to the Bosco Tech 45-yard line.
Bishop Montgomery got as close as the 17, but the Tigers held and Jonathan Kim missed his first of three field-goal attempts. The Knights immediately forced a Fuentes fumble, but the Tigers, who held the Knights to 32 yards rushing in the first half, were stopped again, and then Kim missed again.
Paredes then broke through the Tigers again, taking a reverse 26 yards, untouched, for a TD and a 14-0 lead.
“The first half we were shooting ourselves in the foot and it was still only 14 points,” Shockley said.
On the Knights’ first play of the second half, quarterback Louie Soto went over the middle to tight end Alex Hernandez for 27 yards and Robbie Hou went off tackle on the next play for a 27-yard TD to make it 21-0.
“It’s frustrating because you think you’re in the game, but you’re giving away things like that,” Shockley said. “You take those things away and you’re right there.”
The Tigers finally seemed to get their offense going. They ran off 17 plays, including a pair of fourth-down runs. But Cameron Hughes stepped in front of a Brady Martinez pass along the sidelines and went 70 yards untouched to make it 28-0.
The Tigers’ first scoring drive did not take as long. Two helmet-to-helmet personal fouls on a pair of eight-yard runs helped. Fuentes scored from the 4.
“Our offense sputtered,” Shockley said. “We could not get the third down (conversion). We were keeping it close, but we couldn’t convert. We couldn’t get a rhythm going on offense.”
Hou then made it 35-7, the Knights finally beginning to find a running game. He scored on a 7-yarder.
Michael Turner led the Knights with 62 yards rushing on nine carries and Hou had 51 yards on 10 carries.
“Both defenses played really well,” Hodgkiss said. “Our offense was going off like we usually do.”
Fuentes scored on a 23-yard run with 2:05 to play, the Tigers’ longest play from scrimmage. It was set up by an Alejandro De La Torre interception.
Turner then had the ball stripped and Edward Osorio recovered on the Bishop Montgomery 21.
The Tigers got to the 1-yard line. With fourth down and 6seconds to play, Martinez’s pass was knocked down on what appeared to be a broken play.