by Scott Boyle
The Monticello Buckaroo football team kept their number five ranking in 1A football intact, running their record to 4-3 on the year with a dominating 48-0 Homecoming win over the Altamont Longhorns.
The Bucks controlled the Altamont offense effectively, allowing the visiting Longhorns only 63 yards rushing on the night, with 45 of those yards coming on the last Altamont drive of the night.
Most of the evening, the Black Curtain defense of Monticello only allowed 18 yards rushing and 45 yards passing. The Buck defense also picked up three turnovers, a fumble recovery by Nolan Freestone, and two pass interceptions, one by sophomore cornerback, Max Hedglin, on the Longhorns first drive of the night, and another by senior Alma Beh, back from injury.
Paul DeAnda led the defense with 13 tackles and even returned the opening kickoff five yards. Keaton Young pitched in with 10 tackles of his own.
Once the defense did their job, the Buck offense roared to life again for the second week in a row, using a powerful running game to set up a deadly passing game.
QB Brayson Wilcox tossed four touchdown passes on an 8 for 15 night for 205 yards. Beh caught two of those TD passes, while Freestone and Andrew Torres also each snagged a Wilcox pass for a touchdown.
The Bucks rushed for 216 yards with 190 coming in that dominant first half. Thomas Anderson did most of the damage, rushing for 118 yards on just 11 carries and two touchdowns. Torres added another rushing touchdown.
Talon Black added four extra points and a 43 yard field goal attempt that traveled 42.9 yards before hitting the crossbar and bouncing away.
Anderson got the Buck offense rolling on the first series after Hedglin’s interception, when he packed the pigskin 39 yards to paydirt just four plays into the Bucks first series at 10:35 of the first quarter.
Eight minutes later, after Freestones fumble recovery, the Bucks scored again on a sustained 10 play, 43 yard drive. The key play in the drive was a third and 11 play ]pass play from Wilcox to Torres of 19 yards that got the first down and gave the Bucks the ball on the Altamont 10 yard line.
Anderson got the TD two plays later on a five yard dash up the middle of the Longhorn defense. Black and Torres teamed for the two-point conversion to make the score 14-0 with four minutes left in the first quarter.
The Buck defense forced a three and out on the Longhorns and a 13 yard punt gave the Bucks another golden opportunity. Torres scored from seven yards out to get the score to 21-0 after a Black extra point kick.
Key play on the drive was a 27 yard scamper around the end by Shandon Bradford on the Bucks second play, getting the Buckaroos inside the Longhorn 10 yard line.
The Bucks scored twice more in the second quarter, on an 18 yard Wilcox to Beh pass, and a 29 yard Wilcox to Torres pass culminating a six play 74 yard drive, making the score 35-0 at half.
The second half zipped by with the mercy rule in effect, but the Bucks still scored on two of their three offensive possessions in the half. Wilcox and Freestone hooked up on a beautiful 63 yard TD pass in the third quarter.
Wilcox and Beh connected in the fourth quarter on a 43 yard pass play to get to the final score, 48-0.
It could have been worse, but for two Buckaroo fumbles inside the Altamont 20 yard line, but we can’t be greedy, can we?
The 422 total yards put up by the Buck offense was its highest total of the year. Besides Anderson’s 118 yards, Bradford had 47 yards on just four carries, and Beh added 33 yards on seven carries. Freestone two receptions for 72 yards and a touchdown, Beh, 61 yards and 2 TDs on two catches, Torres three catches for 51 yards, TD and extra point.
The Bucks next travel to Diamond Ranch for a game against top-ranked DiamondBacks. They are 5-0 with wins over Duchesne and Rich.
The Lady Bucks had the brooms out for Homecoming week, sweeping both the Monument Valley Cougars and the Grand County Red Devils. Against the Cougars, the Bucks dominated 25-7 in the first game, and added 25-20 and 25-17 wins to get the victory with lots of younger players seeing action.
The Ladies beat the Red Devils for the second time this year, but had to stretch a lot to do so, taking the first game 25-20. After the Red Devils pushed the Buckaroos in the second game, which the Bucks won 25-23, the home team took the third game and the match 25-18, running their season record to 14-4, keeping intact their number one ranking!
Way to go Lady Bucks! Next up, two home matches Thursday and Friday against Pinnacle and Whitehorse.