Adam Mullen, above, running in a game earlier this season, scored 6 TD's against Yosemite and now has 48 TD's in his two year varsity career. Both rank #1 all-time in school history, tied with former Warrior running back Tanner Hutchinson (2002-03). Mullin could break the career TD record against Hanford if he scores a touchdown. Photo by The Bakersfield Californian

SSL Ramblings ...
Warriors Travel To #1 Seed Hanford Friday
CIF DIII Championship On The Line

Posted by on December 8, 2008

The Tehachapi Warriors will travel to Hanford this Friday night with a chance to earn a second straight CIF Central Section championship, and the 10th CIF championship in school history. The Warriors, 9-4, will meet the Hanford Bullpups, 11-1, for the first time in school history.

The underdog Warriors were impressive in their offensive shootout with the #2 seeded Badgers, holding on for a 62-41 victory, on a cool clear night in the mountains of Oakhurst. The win gave the Warriors their sixth straight win, and eighth win in their last nine games.

This was the fourth time the two schools had met in playoff games, with the Warriors now holding a 3-1 advantage. The Badgers came into the game with their own six-game winning streak, including quality wins this season over teams from San Joaquin Memorial (9-0), Liberty-Madera (44-0), and Dinuba (31-24). Yosemite, the 2nd place team from the Central Sequoia League, finished the season with a final 8-4 record.

One interesting note, the Warriors and Badgers had one common opponent this season: Hanford. Yosemite lost to the Bullpups in Hanford the second week of the season, 14-19.

Wide Receiver/Safety #3 Cougar Williams

Meet the #1 Seeded Hanford Bullpups ...

Once again the Warriors will be underdogs against the #1 seeded Hanford Bullpups, the pre-season favorite to win Division III. Hanford has historically been in Division II for many years, and many prep experts felt the Bullpups received a gift when they were dropped from DII to DIII in football beginning in 2008.

Hanford has not reached a Central Section championship game since 1982 and has never won a section title.

Hanford, from the West Yosemite League, will be the best team the Warriors have faced this season. The Bullpups have steamrolled past all of their opponents in 2008 with one exception --- El Diamante of Visalia. The El D Miners defeated Hanford in Visalia, 31-14, to win the West Yosemite League. El D (11-1) defeated highly touted Edison-Fresno this past Friday night to earn a birth in the DII finals against undefeated Tulare (12-0). El D is the defending DII section champion.

The red-clad Bullpups are dynamic on both sides of the ball. On offense, Hanford averages 32.9 points per game. Senior Cougar Williams, #3 at 5'9", carries the load for Hanford. He is the primary pass receiver, will run the ball at times, returns punts and kickoffs, and is dangerous on defense as the free safety. Williams has caught 58 passes this season and scored 19 TD's. The Bullpups design plays to get the fleet-footed Williams the ball in space to allow him to outrun defensive players.

Senior quarterback Bryant Furtado has connected on 154 of 249 passes this season for 1,960 passing yards. Besides Williams, Furtado will also look for #19 DJ Jackson-Maciel, who has 35 catches for 444 yards.

The pass happy Bullpups run to keep the defense honest, and when they do, the ball goes to #22 Tyre Hudgins and #2 Lemuel Hutchings.

As good as they are on offense, Hanford is winning games with defense. The Bullpups have not allowed more than 2 TD's in any game this season --- other than the El D game. In the playoffs, Hanford defeated Delano, 48-6, and shutout Foothill, 24-0. Middle linebacker Tony Bettencourt leads the Hanford defense with the most tackles.

It will an interesting match-up to see the stingy Bullpup defense against the prolific Warrior offense?

Prolific Warrior Offense Continues To Set Records ...

With their 62 point performance against Yosemite, the Warriors have now established a new single season record for the most points scored in one season with 439 points. The old single season mark was held by the Jerad Romo led 2000 Warrior team that scored 433 points. That's not a shabby record considering the Warriors have been fielding football teams for nearly 80 years.

The combined 103 (62-41) points scored by the Warriors and Badgers ranks #2 all-time for most points scored in one game by two teams. The #1 game was the 75-42 (117 points) shootout won by the Warriors over Shafter in 2006.

Individually, senior Adam Mullen scored 6 TD's to tie Tanner Hutchinson (2002-03) with the record for the most TD's in a single game. Mullen has also scored 48 TD's in his varsity career, giving him a tie with Hutchinson as the all-time Warrior career leader. And to think, Mullen missed three games earlier in the season due to injuries?

Sidekick Josh Strauss also continues to add to his career rushing totals as the senior has now amassed 3,326 total rushing yards over the last three seasons, including 1,696 yards in 2008. He has climbed to the number #4 position all-time behind Anthony Kelly (1988-89).

For more on the record setting accomplishments of both Mullen and Strauss, check out the Records Section of this website by clicking here.

Mullen's Varsity Career Statistics

 GCar  YdsTD  Pts
2006  1   1      6   0   0
200713120   971 19120
2008101631,480 29174
Totals242842,457 48294

Around the SSL This Week ... Bakersfield Christian Going For Div. V Crown

While Tehachapi is battling Hanford for the DIII title, Bakersfield Christian will be 15 miles down the road in Corcoran trying to win a Division V championship. The #2 seeded Eagles at 11-1 will be traveling to #1 seed Corcoran to tangle with the undefeated Panthers (11-0).

In Division IV, #4 seeded Kingsburg (which knocked out Taft) will be traveling to #2 seed Chowchilla (11-1) for the championship game.

As previously mentioned, El Diamante will be in Tulare for the DII championship game. The same two teams played last year in the 2007 title bout which was won by El D in Visalia.

Last Friday, Clovis West defeated Clovis East for the Division I title and Tranquility outlasted Orange Cove for the Division VI championship.

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