Tehachapi at Golden Valley (Bakersfield)

October 21, 2016

Warrior running back Zion Dean #24 rambles for yardage against Golden Valley Friday night in Bakersfield.
Dean and the Warriors had their way with Golden Valley, winning 54-22. The Warriors travel to Ridgeview
this Friday night for a crucial SYL game.   Photo by The Tehachapi News.

Warriors Head For Ridgeview As Offense Ignites

Posted on October 22, 2016 by John Nelson, The Tehachapi News

The Warriors have won two in a row, they're 2-1 in the South Yosemite League — and now, here comes Ridgeview.

“They're loaded,” Warriors head coach Steve Denman said.

Again — and the Warriors' South Yosemite League prospects could well hinge on the result at Ridgeview on Friday night, Oct. 28.

The 3-0 Wolf Pack has not lost a league game since 2013 and last year handed the Warriors their most lopsided defeat in Denman's 35 years of coaching, 64-21.

Yet, after an 0-4 start, the Warriors have gone 3-1 and are coming off a pretty one-sided victory of their own, a 54-22 win over Golden Valley Friday night, Oct. 21.

Chase Podratz scored three touchdowns and rushed for 197 yards for the Warriors, who took advantage of a fumble recovery and an interception to score four straight touchdowns in a 10-minute span of the second half.

Leading 28-14 at halftime, the Warriors built a 54-14 lead with just 14 seconds gone in the fourth quarter.

“Pound for pound, Chase might be the strongest kid on the team,” Denman said. “He's really deceiving (at 5-foot-8, 175 pounds). He looks like he's not a very big kid, but he's very, very strong for his size.”

Although he was held to just 39 yards rushing on seven carries, Warriors running back Keyron Scott also had a pair of rushing touchdowns, and Tyler Metzler and Tyler Mata also scored on short runs.

“They were keying on Keyron, so that opened it up for our fullbacks and tailbacks,” Denman said.

Troy Noda got the Warriors' other touchdown on a 69-yard interception return late in the first half that gave Tehachapi a 28-7 lead and threatened to blow the game open.

The Bulldogs, however, got that TD back quickly when Da'vione Thomasson took the ensuing kickoff and ran it back 90 yards for a touchdown with 53.1 seconds left in the first half.

The third quarter belonged exclusively to the Warriors and a rushing offense that would wind up with 462 yards on the night.

Tehachapi kicked off to start the second half and took over on downs at the Golden Valley 34 when the Bulldogs elected to go for it on fourth-and-1 rather than punt.

Podratz rushed five times, mostly behind the Warriors guards, and scored on a 28-yard run with 9:37 left in the third quarter, breaking tackles and carrying Golden Valley defenders. That gave the Warriors a 35-14 lead, and they were on their way.

With Golden Valley keying on the outside rushing threat of Scott, “we were able to utilize our two guards, do some trapping inside and get Podratz a lot of yards,” Denman said.

“Our kids up front did a great job,” he said. “We're not real big up front, but we're pretty athletic. We were able to utilize that.”

Golden Valley fumbled the kickoff back to the Warriors, and they were on the march again. This time, Podratz scored from the 5, and it was 41-14.

Tehachapi forced a Golden Valley punt, then, starting on their own 9-yard line, went on a 91-yard, 11-play drive that ended with Scott's second TD of the game, a 25-yarder.

Zion Dean had a 30-yard run on third down and long to keep the drive alive, and the Warriors led 48-14.

The Warriors final touchdown came after Logan Snider intercepted a Golden Valley pass at the Bulldogs 29, and Mata later scored from the 3.

In all, five Warriors running backs had significant yardage. Metzler had 69 yards, followed by Dean with 68, and Anthony Powell with 41, making it impossible for the Bulldogs to key on any one Warrior runner.

“They all have their qualities, and they all run hard and play hard, not only when they're carrying the ball but when they're in there blocking for each other,” Denman said.

It's that kind of offensive versatility the Warriors will need to be successful against Ridgeview.

“Last year, we played them tough almost until the end of the second quarter. That's when Keyron got hurt, and we couldn't keep their offensive off the field,” Denman said after earning his 298th career victory.

“We've got to keep our offense on the field and keep the chains moving against Ridgeview because they're so explosive,” he said. “We can't just leave our defense on the field.”

1st2nd3rd 4thFinal
Tehachapi 13 15  20  6 54
Golden Valley  0 14   0  8 22

The Scoring:

1st Quarter:

Teh: Scott 1 run (Graham kick)
Teh: Podratz 8 run (kick failed)

2nd Quarter:

Teh: Metzler 12 run (Garcia run)
GV: Thomasson 5 pass from Colbert (Lopez kick)
Teh: Noda 69 interception return (Graham kick)
GV: Thomasson 90 kickoff return (Lopez kick)

3rd Quarter:

Teh: Podratz 28 run (Graham kick)
Teh: Podratz 5 run (kick failed)
Teh: Scott 25 run (Graham kick)

4th Quarter:

Teh: Mata 3 run (kick failed)
GV: Thompson 2 run (Thomasson pass from Jones)

Tehachapi vs Golden Valley Stats

First Downs
Passing Yards12 77
Total Yards474 183

Individual Statistics:

RUSHING—Tehachapi: Podratz 19-197, Metzler 11-69, Dean 3-68, Scott 7-39, Powell 5-41, Garcia 5-19, Mata 4-17, Noda 1-12.
Golden Valley: Thompson 19-73, Jones 3-23, Brownen 1-19, Colbert 3-(-9).

PASSING—Tehachapi: Garcia 1-2-1-12. Golden Valley: Colbert 9-18-2-59, Jones 1-3-0-18.

RECEIVING—Tehachapi: Scott 1-12. Golden Valley: Jones 3-26, Thomasson 3-23, Thompson 1-20, Christian 2-5, Lopez 1-3.

Varsity Records: Tehachapi 3-5 (SYL 2-1). Golden Valley 2-6 (SYL 0-3).

JV: Tehachapi Braves 34, Golden Valley JV's 12.
FROSH: Tehachapi Indians 26, Golden Valley Frosh 30.