The Nighthawk’s Explosive Offensive Machine is All Tuned Up and Ready for Chino Hills
The Nighthawks were unstoppable, scoring on their first nine possessions behind their talented offensive line consisting of Juniors Clay Hatch , Anthony Pardue, Adam Meyer, sophomore Kimo Waiaiae and senior Tenoa Fedler.
“The offensive line was on fire tonight” said Nighthawk coach Andre Smith. “We talked about imposing our will… they did a pretty good job of that on the field tonight. It’s about us winning the line of scrimmage over the course of the game”.
Sophomore quarterback Hank Bachmeier threw five touchdowns and completed an amazing 23 of 27 passes for 319 yards. Running back Olita Palmer got the job done on the ground. The senior gained 272 yards on 38 carries and scored four rushing touchdowns and another one in the air.
Junior Marquis Spiker had six catches for three touchdowns and 79 yards. Senior Ryan Mascarenas caught the other TD pass from Bachmeier. Senior and team captain Maurice Bell suffered an apparent torn meniscus and had to leave the game after catching three passes on Murrieta’s opening drive.
The Nighthawk defense made several key stops to ensure the victory but gave up six touchdowns and almost 500 yards against La Habra. “We would like to play better defense in big games like this” said Murrieta Valley Coach Sean Cue. “With an offense like ours there’s some room for error. We came up with big stops when we needed to, but I hope we can fix the little mistakes we made as we head into next week”.
“Brandon Ramos was solid up front, and Joe Montoya had a good game as well. Kelly Coleman had a huge interception and we got a big fumble recovery towards the end. Tevin Teague played lights out last night” added Cue.
The Nighthawks actually trailed twice in the game. The Highlanders scored first and the two teams were trading touchdowns into the second quarter when the Nighthawks pulled away. It was 42-28 at halftime. The Murrieta Valley defense gave up two more touchdowns in the third before finally shutting down La Habra in the fourth quarter. Murrieta would outscore the Highlanders 21-14 in the final half to go on to win it by a score of 63-42.
Murrieta Valley will be home next Friday night to host San Clemente in the CIF Southern Section Division 2 Championship Game. The Tritons are 10-3 and finished second to Mission Viejo in the South Coast League. San Clemente beat Chino Hills in round one of the playoffs followed by victories over Heritage and Valencia.
Game time is scheduled for 7:30.
Photos by Mike Clary