Once again, the Mountain View Mountain Lions defense dictated the terms in a 42-0 win at Catalina Foothills.
For the Mountain Lions (5-3), it was the third time this season they held their opponents without an offensive touchdown.
“Defensively, we did a great job,” said Mountain View coach Clarence McRae. “We’re trying to keep teams out of the end zone.”
Mountain View held Foothills (0-8) to 50 yards passing and -9 yards rushing.
In fact, the defense set the tempo on the first Foothills possession. They stopped them with a three-and-out, which ended with a sack on third down. They had gotten penetration on the line for a two-yard loss on the game’s first play.
After the punt, Mountain View took possession just past mid-field. Richie Estrada had a seven-yard run and another six-yard run. Quarterback Cody Rochon kept the ball and broke a 28-yard touchdown run. Rochon banged into the middle, got free, and raced down the right sideline to pay dirt for a 7-0 lead.
The Mountain Lions’ next touchdown was set up by senior Weston Kimmel. Kimmel returned a punt 35 yards down to the Foothills 27-yard line.
Kimmel broke an eight-yard run for a first down. And then, a couple of plays later, Kimmel ran nine yards for the score. Kimmel, one of the key factors in the team’s tough defense, from his linebacker position, starred on the offensive end.
Kimmel finished with 63 yards rushing on only five carries. He also caught a 13-yard pass, and his impact on punt returns was significant enough that in the second half, the Falcons seemed to be deliberately punting the ball away from him.
“I was happy I got a shot,” Kimmel said. “The linemen did a great job.”
“Defense is what I mostly play.”
The defensive effort was so stifling by the Mountain Lions that they held Foothills’ offense (outside of a roughing the passer penalty) to just two first downs in the first half.
Foothills receiver Jeremy Tedards caught a 30-yard pass and another 11-yarder for a first down. Tedards caught four passes for 47 yards for the Falcons.
Offensively, the Mountain Lions kept scoring. Estrada scored on a three-yard touchdown run in the second, and later caught a 51-yard touchdown pass, which was the final touchdown for the Mountain Lions. Estrada finished with three touchdowns in the game.
Estrada has carried the offense most of the season. In the team’s first seven games, he had gained 1,000 yards rushing, and never had less than 85 yards rushing in a game.
Foothills held the Mountain Lion star to just 57 yards on 15 carries.
Mountain View quarterback Rochon completed five of 12 passes for 129 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. He also ran for 57 yards and a touchdown.
“It was huge for us,” McRae said. “Getting a W helps to get us on the right track. We need to prepare for Flowing Wells.”
Friday, the Mountain Lions will host Flowing Wells (2-6) at 7p.m.
The last game will have the Mountain Lions play Cholla (0-8).
Finishing the season at 7-3 might be enough to get the team into the playoffs.
“I’m happy we have a chance,” Kimmel said. “We haven’t had five wins for (several) years until this year.”