By Duane Barker
(Montebello) The El Rancho Dons traveled north Friday night to the not so friendly confines of Montebello High School and were treated to a 38-14 drubbing in what was mostly a one-sided game.
The El Rancho offense found it difficult to find any traction against a stout Oiler defense.
The Oilers got the ball first and wasted no time getting on the board. Anthony Marroquin capped a three play, 49-yard drive with a one yard plunge. Carlos Flores came on and booted through the extra point for an early 7-0 lead.
The 7-0 lead would remain until 7:54 left in the first half. An Oiler drive would stall at the El Rancho 10 and Montebello head coach Pete Gonzalez sent Flores back out for a 27-yard field goal attempt. Flores was good on the effort and Montebello now led 10-0.
Less than a minute later the Oilers would light up the scoreboard again. After recovering on onside kick at the Don 49, Montebello only needed 2 plays to find paydirt again. Sean Romero fired a pass in the flat to Nikesh Patel who sliced his way through the El Rancho defense to glory. Flores was good again on the point after.
It was more of Montebello to start the second half. A 56-yard drive was highlighted by a 28-yard strike from Romero to his favorite receiver on the night, Patel. With Flores’ extra point the rout was on for Montebello up 24-0. Patel finished the night hauling in nine passed for 160-yards and the two touchdowns.
While El Rancho’s offense struggled, the defense would be the first to put points on the board for the Dons. Adrian Orihuela picked off a Romero pass in the flat and outraced the Oilers to the endzone. The Dons went for two and were successful when Raymon Rocah found Jayden Parker in the corner of the endzone to complete the two-point conversion with 3:33 left in the third.
Early in the final frame the Oilers pushed their lead to 31-8, grinding up yardage and the clock on an 11-play, 65 yard drive that saw Julian Silva get his first score of the night from 13-yards out.
El Rancho showed some signs of life on their ensuing drive going 66-yards on 11 plays with Anthony Orihuela getting the call and the score from 2-yards away. The two point conversion was unsuccessful this time but the Dons cut the lead to 31-14.
After the score El Rancho tried the onside kick but were unsuccessful giving the ball up to the Oilers on the Montebello 48. Two plays later Silva got his second score on a 52-yard scamper to the endzone. Flores came on to drill the extra point for the final score of 38-14.
It was a big night for Romero in front of the home crowd hitting on 24 of 37 passes for 320-yards and the two scores.
El Rancho will look to regroup as they prepare for a match up with Mayfair next week while Montebello with try and make it two straight when the Oilers travel to Santa Fe.