IMPERIAL — The Imperial High Tigers hosted well-rounded Bonita Vista High last night, falling 54-6 to the top-ranked football squad.
Although showing some promising play early, key mistakes offensively and a rushing attack from the Barons saw the Tigers fall behind and never quite recover.
The Bonita Vista High Barons opened up the scoring on a six-play touchdown drive behind their strong line play and rushing attack, capped off by an eight-yard rushing touchdown from running back, Chris Boguille.
The Tigers would turn the ball over on the next possession giving the Barons the ball at their own 46-yard line.
From there, the Barons would drive all the way up to the Tiger six-yard line before the Tiger defense clamped down, forcing a fourth down, field goal attempt. A bad snap allowed the Tigers enough time to penetrate the Bonita Vista line and block the kick, but again they could not get the offense going as the Barons would force a punt before crossing the 50-yard line.
The Barons scored from a run-heavy series on a four-play, 53-yard drive. This time the touchdown run was provided by Greg Bell who took it in from the four-yard line to end the first quarter.
A four-and-out for the Tigers gave the Barons an opportunity to add to the score, but a timely blitz call, and a heads up play from Josh Gutierrez defensively, gave Imperial it’s first points of the game, on an interception return from Gutierrez.
With the score now 14-6 and momentum now on their side, the Tigers showed some fight was still left in them as they recovered an onside kick on the ensuing kickoff.
The Tigers looked to cut into the lead, or tie, but costly mistakes led to a turnover on downs rather than points on the board.
The Barons drove down the field and looked to be stopped at the Tiger 21-yard line. Facing a 4th-and-10 Bonita Vista quarterback Anthony Posada was able to wriggle his way into the endzone giving the Barons a comfortable 21-6 lead going into the half.
The Barons poured it on in the second half, scoring 33 unanswered points en route to the 54-6 final score.
Bell scored two, third-quarter touchdowns on rushes of one and 32 yards for the Barons and Chris Boguille added another rushing touchdown to his total on a one-yard rush. Dennis Rosario and Josh Godfrey got into the mix late as Rosario scored on a 13-yard rush and Godfrey added the last score, a 76-yard dash to the endzone.
“You can build off of a loss as well as you can a win. Our kids didn’t quit, and those are things as a coach that you can work with,” said Imperial High Tiger Head Coach, Kerry Legarra.
“If we would have just folded up tent, then you throw in the season, but we’re not throwing in the season, because we have guys that have a lot of heart, a lot of character and they played hard through the whole thing.”
Imperial (0-2, 0-0 IVL) will host Carlsbad High at 7 p.m. Friday.