The Bishop Broncos started a tough pre-league football season with a huge bull’s eyes on their jerseys. Who doesn’t want to knock off the CIF Southern Section Division Champions?
The only problem: The Broncos of 2011 are young and relatively inexperienced. That showed in Bishop’s 7-42 loss Saturday to the number one ranked Division 12 Sierra Canyon Trailblazers. The schedule doesn’t get any easier. In the coming weeks, the Broncos face Chadwick, a team Bishop knocked out of the CIF playoffs 49-20, and Rim of the World in the Broncos’ first home game, Sept. 23.
But, where there’s a Bronco, there is hope. Bishop has a seasoned, talented QB in Chance Callahan; returning varsity non-starters, like Jaime Ruelas, were impressive; the line has strong leadership in Matt Doonan and the players coming up from the High Desert League championship JV team held their own against a strong Sierra Canyon team. That’s the good news.
The bad news: The Trailblazers’ offense was very successful in plugging away on short yardage and keeping the ball away from Bishop. The Sierra Canyon defense successfully shut down the Broncos’ offense.
Bishop kept Sierra Canyon out of the end zone on the Trailblazers’ first possession, a possession that lasted forever. The Broncos’ defense held Sierra Canyon to a total of 45 yards gained, in 13 plays, before the Trailblazers turned the ball over on downs at Bishop’s 30.
The Broncos’ march up the field came to an abrupt halt with a pass interception and run back to mid-field by Sierra Canyon.
In three plays, quarterback Tyler Stewart had a man, speedster Julian Brooks, in Bishop’s end zone to take a 0-7 lead.
Bishop had a quick answer. Ruelas caught the kick on the 5-yard line and headed straight down the sidelines for a 95-yard TD, tying the score 7-7.
Sierra Canyon scored on their next possession to end the quarter 7-14. By the half, the Trailblazers had extended the lead to 7-28. The Broncos got in some hits on defense, but Sierra Canyon had the run of the field, ending their scoring blitz early in the fourth quarter with a 7-42 lead.
Bishop travels to Palos Verdes to meet Chadwick this Saturday at 2 p.m. The Dolphins are coming off a 63-20 win over Los Angeles Baptist. The Bishop/Chadwich game will be broadcast on KBOV.
Next weekend, the Fighting Scots of Rim of the World Friday, Sept. 23 at John Schwab Field at 7 p.m. The Scots are also coming off an opening game win, 44-7 over Victor Valley.