The two teams combined for over 400 yards, 10 touchdowns and 72 points. And that was just in the first half. When the dust settled it was Marcos de Niza who came out on top over Sierra Vista Buena, 78-57, Friday night in Tempe.
“We thought we had a great defensive plan,” said Marcos de Niza coach Roy Lopez. “They say that defense wins championships. I don’t know, I think times have changed, and I’m a defensive guy.”
The fireworks started early on as there were five touchdowns scored in the first quarter alone. Buena (1-2) scored on five of its first six possessions on its way to a 14-point halftime lead. Senior quarterback Rafael Adames had over 200 yards passing and four touchdowns, in the first half.
In the first quarter, Adames connected with Bert Sims and Deonte Williams on touchdowns of 61 and 60 yards respectively. On their nine first half possessions, Buena found the endzone six times.
In the second half, Marcos de Niza quarterback Josh Eckley took over the game. The Padres outscored the Colts 49-14 over the final 24 minuets, due in large part to the play of their senior leader.
“Josh is a playmaker,” said Lopez. “His supporting cast is just getting deeper and deeper.”
A major part of Eckley’s supporting cast Friday night was wide receiver N’Keal Harry. The sophomore finished the game with six catches for 198 yards and two touchdowns. The Padres got 156 rushing yards combined from Jake Lagunas and Luke Nguyen.
However, Eckley stole the show, the signal caller finished the night 15-28 for 359 yards and six touchdowns through the air. Eckley also added 158 yards on 16 carries and a pair of touchdowns on the ground.
“The offense just kept fighting and giving all their effort,” said Eckley, who injured his ankle in the fourth quarter. “All my wide receivers are pretty good. I knew I could trust any of them.”
The Padres (3-0) had a difficult week of practice, as their offensive line coach Mike Rohme underwent heart surgery just two days ago. The Padres dedicated the victory to Rohme, who was on the sideline coaching Friday night.
“My cardiologist did a good job because these guys are killing me,” said coach Rohme. “I could not be more proud of my guys the way they fought tonight.”
Marcos De Niza 78, Buena 57
First Downs: MD 26, B 19
Rushing: MD 40-311, B 39-239
Passing: MD 15-29-359-6-0, B 15-38-333-6-2
Fumbles-Lost: MD 1-1, B 0-0
Penalties: MD 6-75, B 12-105
Marcos De Niza 15 14 20 29 -- 78
Buena 22 21 7 7 -- 57
Buena: Pickrtey 13 pass from Adames (kick failed)
Marcos: Lagunas 13 run (Becerra kick)
Buena: Sims 61 pass from Adames (2 PT)
Marcos: Eckley 25 run (2 PT)
Buena: Williams 60 pass from Adames (2 PT)
Buena: Sims 1 run (Groves kick)
Marcos: Nguyen 43 run (Becerra kick)
Buena: Blake 27 pass from Adames (Groves kick)
Marcos: Eckley 22 run (Becerra kick)
Buena: Darnels 1 fumble return (Groves kick)
Marcos: Harry 46 pass from Eckley (Becerra kick)
Buena: Sims 66 pass from Adames (Groves kick)
Marcos: Nguyen 36 pass from Eckley (Becerra kick0
Marcos: Lagunas 6 run (kick failed)
Marcos: Trujillo 28 pass from Eckley (2 PT)
Buena: Sims 46 pass from Adames (Groves kick)
Marcos: Harry 78 pass from Eckley (Becerra kick)
Marcos: Trujillo 22 pass from Eckley (Becerra kick)
Marcos: Lagunas 15 pass from Eckley (Becerra kick)