SHINGLE SPRINGS — Jacob Bist passed for 320 yards and three touchdowns and six different Bruins reached the end zone as host Ponderosa rolled over Union Mine 45-7 Friday.
After a blocked punt/fumble recovery for a touchdown cut the Bruins’ second quarter lead to 21-7, Bist (19-of-24) engineered a nine-play drive covering 75 yards with Jake McClelland going the final 7. For the half, Bist, who came out slinging, racked up 248 yards through the air.
“Our passing to start opened up the run game and gave us balance,” Bist said. “The matchups were there and the blocking was good. We made a few mistakes we’ll clean up but overall the offense played well.”
Patriotism was evident at Ponderosa as the school honored its Fallen Warriors. The Junior Bruins walked tiny American flags around the field, the Junior Bruin cheerleaders performed with their varsity counterparts and the home team won the field-position battle to improve its record to 3-0.
“We just didn’t play very well — couldn’t block, tackle or cover them — and as a coach you try to say something politically correct but I’m at a loss for words,” Diamondback coach Dave Johnson said.
Bist found tight end Ralph Raetz up the middle for an 8-yard touchdown two and a half minutes after Union Mine kicked off to open the game. Ponderosa made it 14-0 after McClelland received a short pass, ducked under a would-be tackle and ran in from 12 yards out.
The Bruins extended when Bist found Matt McBride wide open down the right side and the hookup went for 63 yards and a 21-0 advantage after Curtis Goldsmith’s third extra point.
Positioned to put the D’backs away, Anthony Beck blocked Bist’s punt a series later and recovered the ball in the end zone to get the visitors on the board.
“We practiced that all week and coach said I’d probably get one (block),” Beck said. “It was an adrenaline rush — I dove for it, got it and picked it up.”
Union Mine did get sacks from Tyler Parker, Jesse Morgan and James Warden; Robt Thatcher’s fumble recovery; and Tyler Scott’s block of a point after but still trailed 27-7 at the half.
It took the Bruins one play to make it 33-7 in the third as Brett Jonutz burst around the right side and down the sideline for 46 yards and the score. Bist’s 42-yard completion to Josh Bist set up Jeff Camilli’s 5-yard power run up the middle and a turnover led to the last Ponderosa touchdown, a 4-yard run by Austin Tibbs.
Defensively, the Bruins never gave ground, forcing D’back quarterback Scott McIntyre to hurry his throws and limiting Sean Tow to 32 yards on 10 carries. Camilli’s (12 tackles) hits from his linebacker spot drew gasps from the bleachers and by the fourth quarter, a conceding Union Mine squad handed off to Jasper Spence and Matt Cathey as the clock wound down.
Ponderosa’s Joesph Delvalle and Naji Bseiso each recovered fumbles.
“I really like where we are on both side of the ball. Our offensive line has developed real well despite missing two starters and we have a real confident quarterback. Watching film we saw they (Union Mine) had struggled with the pass and we took advantage,” Bruin coach Jason Tenner said.
McBride had four catches for 105 yards; Josh Bist caught three for 73; Raetz grabbed four for 49 yards; McClelland four for 41; and Canepa three for 35. On the ground, Jonutz rushed four times for 56 yards and Canepa eight times for 55.
For Union Mine, Jake Horn caught three passes for 27 yards and Sam Armanino snared three for 15.
The JV game went to the wire. Trailing 21-15, Ponderosa’s Xavier Valles found Conrad Washington for the game-tying touchdown with 2 seconds left and Robert Holloway’s point-after-kick won it for the Bruins.