Wildcats prove to be too much for Raiders
By Jason Burch
La Habra Journal
The Sonora football team went into halftime of its week two contest down just one score, but Brea-Olinda exploded out of the break with three long touchdowns to pull away for a 38-12 win over the Raiders Friday night
in La Habra.
Noah Rivera burned the Raiders for three long scores. The returning All-CIF all-purpose back scored Brea’s first touchdown of the season midway through the second quarter on a breakaway 60-yard run.
“When that kid [Rivera] has got the rock in his hand, he can go at anytime,” said Brea Head Coach Robb Perrance.
With the Wildcats leading 13-6 early in the third, Rivera showed off his hands when he hauled in a picture perfect over the shoulder catch on a seam route from quarterback Dylan Flenniken, and outran the defense for a 63-yard score.
Two minutes later, Rivera completed the trifecta when he returned a punt 54 yards into the endzone.
Sonora Head Coach Daniel Morales said he was really proud of the way his team fought all game long, but admitted that they wore thin with many of the players going both ways.
“In the second half [Brea] had three-to-four really big plays… they timed it out, called really good plays, and caught our guys when they were tired,” Morales said. “You have to just say good job to [Brea’s] coaches for that.”
Flenniken, who was making his first start at quarterback, looked shaky in the first half. He completed just one pass nearly the entire first half.
The Raider defense applied consistent pressure early and appeared to have Flenniken rattled. In one s
eries Flenniken muffed three consecutive snaps while on the cusp of the red zone, eventually giving the ball back to Sonora.
Flenniken connected on his second completion with Michael Salazar for a 6-yard touchdown with just over a minute to play in the half. He opened the second half with a pair of touchdown throws–a 52-yard strike to David Traylor and the play to Rivera.
Sonora got on the scoreboard first with a 9-yard run up the middle by Ethan Cook . The Raiders had success going to Cook early, but playing from behind in the second half limited his touches down the stretch.
After a promising start to the game, the Raiders offense went completely cold in the second half. Sonora moved the ball well early, using Cook inside and spreading the ball out wide to receiver Chigozie Anusiem.
Anusiem collected seven catches for 62 yards, all of which came in the first half, highlighted by a 35-yard grab down the home sideline to set up Cook’s touchdown run.
Perrance said he was happy with how Brea responded in its first game of the season.
“We didn’t start out on the best course, but we overcame adversity, which is always a positive,” Perrance said. “I thought the kids played very passionately all night.”
The Raiders (0-2) will look to get in the win column next Friday when they host Mayfair (0-2).
“It’s tough your first year, you got to coach them up a lot, but I believe in our system and we are going to keep doing it,” Morales said. “The goal is to get ready by league and I think we are on