Bear River blanks Golden Sierra
LAKE OF THE PINES - Thoughts of surprising Bear River High this season vanished quickly for the Golden Sierra High football team Friday night as the Bruins scored on their first four offensive drives en route to a 41-0 victory.
While the offense shined, it was the defense that was stifling, allowing the Grizzlies (2-1) just 23 yards of total offense.
“It is great feeling as a defensive coach.” Bear River co-head coach Terry Logue said. “I think this is the best defensive front we have had since 2005.”
Grizzlies top rusher, Jim Hansen with four touchdowns this season, was held to just 10 yards and no scores.
Senior Dillon Huffman, a 6-3, 260 pound defensive tackle, credited the coaching staff but also acknowledged that the “entire line did their jobs on every play.”
Unlike in 2010, an upset was not in order for Golden Sierra. In Garden Valley, the Grizzlies had a 20-7 lead before Bear River rallied back to win 21-20 with 30-seconds on the clock.
On Friday, the offense was ready to go. After receiving the kickoff, halfback Josh Toft, scored his first of two touchdowns on a 1-yard dive play. He added another 4-yard run in the second to end the night with 51 yards rushing.
Wideout Harley Sauers dazzled the crowd in the first half with a 53-yard touchdown run that began as a short toss from senior quarterback James Harris who would finish the game 5 of 6 for 97 yards.
“It was electric,” said coach Scott Savoie after the game. “It is a timing route, we got some blocks and that was a real big play.”
As Sauers zig-zagged across the Bruin grass, he was helped into the end zone by a monster open field block by Brandon Wooner at the 4-yard line. Not a single person on the Bruins’ side was sitting in the bleachers after that catch and run.
Bruin linebacker Zack Winter intercepted Mike Aplanalp’s pass and took it 50 yards for the score with 41 seconds left in the first half to push the score to 34-0.
Junior halfback Michael Raigoza added another 1-yard run for the score in the third to solidify the Bruins second straight 3-0 start.
The night also pitted former Bear River linebacker coach John Hilton against his friends, Savoie and Logue. Hilton is in his first year at Golden Sierra and is attempting to rebuild a program that has averaged less than 20 varsity players in the last few seasons. Logue said the win is “bittersweet when you are beating a former colleague and friend.”
It was annother impressive win for the JV Bruins as the defense held the JV Grizzlies scoreless in a 27-0 victory. On Bear River’s first offensive play, running back Caleb Johnson sprinted for 76-yards. Two plays later the Bruins would dive into the endzone and never look back. Head Coach Chris Bean stretched the JV's winning streak to 24 games. This year’s Bruins are 3-0.