Win streak ends for Pusch Ridge - The Explorer: Sports

Win streak ends for Pusch Ridge

Playoff loss caps successful season

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Posted: Wednesday, November 12, 2008 12:00 am | Updated: 8:04 am, Thu Mar 24, 2011.

The season ended for the Pusch Ridge Christian Academy Lions on Friday night, when a cold wind blowing from the mountains sent a chill through the bundled crowd.

Unfortunately for the 7-3 Lions, the temperature did nothing to freeze the physical offensive attack of Camp Verde High School.

The Cowboys’ (6-5) bruising ground game chipped away at the Lions’ defense, eventually leading Camp Verde to a 23-13 victory in 2A playoff football and ending Pusch Ridge’s win streak at seven games.

The Cowboys finished the game with 428 total yards, boasting two 100-yard rushers and 274 on the ground.

“They just sort of started to wear us down,” said Pusch Ridge head coach Bob Vance.

According to Vance, the early loss of sophomore cornerback Tyler Goodwillie compromised the Lions’ ability to stop the run.

“If you look, they kept running where he would’ve been, and we missed him badly,” said Vance. “We knew Camp Verde was a big, strong team, they come to hit. We did too, but they just outhit us.”

Mistakes plagued the Lions, especially on special teams, including a long snap over senior punter Joey Degroff’s head that resulted in a safety for the Cowboys.

After the half, Pusch Ridge seemed ready to put the demons of the first two quarters to rest. The Lions roared out on a long touchdown drive headed by junior quarterback Greg Schimke and highlighted by an 18-yard completion to senior tight end Dawson Jones, a 17-yard run by senior running back Mike Baquet, and capped with a 5-yard touchdown run by junior running back Brent Overstreet.

After that drive, it was all Camp Verde. The Cowboys scored their safety and another touchdown to take a 23-7 lead midway through the fourth quarter.

Another long pass to a wide open Jones would give Pusch Ridge a final score late, but a subsequent long drive by Camp Verde extinguished any hope of a comeback.

Despite the early playoff exit, first-year coach Vance was thankful for a team that made his initial foray into the top varsity spot a memorable one.

“It was just an awesome year,” said Vance with an emotional smile. There were “so many bright spots.”

Players were the story of the 2008 season, Vance said.

“We had new guys like (senior wide receiver) Daniel Vavrusa from the Czech Republic playing football for the first time, making touchdowns and contributing to the team, young guys coming up and doing so much,” said Vance. “Our old guys like (senior linebacker) Matt Baquet, playing his heart out all year long, and (senior offensive lineman) David Bergeron.”

As for 2009, Vance is excited about the prospects his Lions have in the wings.

“Goodwillie played with so much heart all year long as a sophomore, he’ll be ready next year,” said Vance. “We’ve got a bunch of young guys, a lot of juniors and sophomores coming up, we’re going to be tough again next year.”

Vance already has the 2009 postseason in mind.

“We’ll be back in the playoffs next year,” said Vance. “And we’re going to go farther.”

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HS Schedule

Tuesday, September 16

Boys Golf (@ 3 p.m.)

Buena, Cienega at Marana

Mountain View, Ironwood Ridge, Catalina at Amphi (Silverbell GC)

Catalina Foothills, Pueblo, Sahuarita at Sahuaro

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Mountain View at Rio Rico

Ironwood Ridge at Glendale Ironwood

Swimming (@4 p.m.)

Pusch Ridge, Sahuarita at Desert Christian

Wednesday, September 17

Girls Golf (@ 3 p.m.)

Rincon at CDO

Ironwood Ridge, Desert View at Flowing Wells (Silverbell)

Cross Country (@4:30)

Salpointe at Catalina Foothills

Palo Verde, Nogales at Marana

Rincon, St. Gregory at CDO

Sahuarita, Pueblo, Pusch Ridge at Desert View

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Empire at Marana (4:30, 5:30, 6:30)

CDO at Queen Creek

Cienega at Mountain View

Sahuaro at Catalina Foothills

Walden Grove at Pusch Ridge

Thursday, September 18

Girls Golf

CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Boys Golf

Sahuaro and Salpointe at Ironwood Ridge

CDO, Rincon, Sunnyside at Tucson High

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Marana at Sahuarita

Ironwood Ridge at Sahuaro (4:30, 5:30, 6:30)

Catalina Foothills at Rincon

Pusch Ridge at San Manuel

Swimming (4 p.m.)

Marana vs. Tucson at Quincy Douglas Pool

Cienega at Marana

CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Amphi

Catalina Foothills at Sahuaro

Freshman Football (all games at 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Flowing Wells at Marana (4 p.m.)

Desert View at Mountain View

Cienega at CDO

Ironwood Ridge at Buena

Catalina Foothills at Sahuarita

JV Football (all games at 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Amphi at Marana

Santa Cruz Valley at Pusch Ridge

Mountain View at Desert View

CDO at Cienega

Buena at Ironwood Ridge

Sahuarita at Catalina Foothills

Friday, September 19

Boys Golf

Catalina Foothills, Ironwood Ridge, CDO, at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Cross Country

Mountain View, Ironwood Ridge at Mt. Carmel Invitational (San Diego, CA)

Girls Volleyball

CDO at Westwood Tournament of Champions

Football (@7 p.m.)

Pusch Ridge at Santa Cruz Valley

Catalina at Marana

Desert Vista at Mountain View

Ironwood Ridge at Buena

Cienega at CDO

Catalina Foothills at Sahuarita

Saturday, September 20

Boys Golf

Catalina Foothills, Ironwood Ridge, CDO, at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Cross Country

Marana at Old Pueblo Invite(Lincoln Park)

Mountain View at San Diego

Catalina Foothills, CDO at Ojo Rojo (Chandler, AZ)


Marana at Wolves Classic (Chandler High)

Girls Volleyball

CDO at Westwood Tournament of Champions


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