By Alex A. Gonzalez
Covina — The Upland Highlanders scored on their first three possessions and added a pick-six, jumping to 28-0 lead Friday night against Charter Oak at Lou Farrar Stadium. Trent Dailey led the way by scoring two rushing touchdowns, helping his team cruise to a 31-10 win over the Chargers.
“We did good. We were firing on all cylinders,” said Dailey after the game. “Offense was good. We had a few mishaps, but we’re unstoppable when we’re firing like that.”
The Scots started the game by establishing their running attack as they relied on both Dailey and quarterback Noah Sandoval to lead them down the field on their first possession. After a successful fourth down conversion, Dailey capped the 10-play drive after he took the handoff and bulldozed his way into the end zone from a yard out.
Charter Oak tried to duplicate what Upland did but through the air. However, after three straight incomplete passes, their first drive was short, and they were forced to punt. Unfortunately, the snap sailed over the head of Mitchell Gibbens and was recovered by Brody Morgan of Upland on the Charger 13-yard line.
With a short field to work with, the Highlanders only needed one passing play from Sandoval to Justin Benson to extend their lead to 14-0 with 7:08 remaining in the first quarter.
Charter Oak responded on their ensuing possession by handing the ball off to running back Aaron Rivera, who was able to gain positive yards, but the drive stalled out, and they were forced to punt again. This time, the snap was clean, and Gibbens was able to pin Upland on their 15-yard line.
Although the Scots were pinned deep in their territory, they were able to flip the field after Sandoval connected with Benson again, who was able to go 69 yards down the field, setting his team up at the Charger 10-yard line. Dailey ended the drive on the next play with his 10-yard rushing touchdown, putting his team up by three scores.
“Honestly, I’m just following the big boys up front,” commented Dailey about his offensive line. “Their blocking and their sealing, I just follow them. They are my dogs. Without them, I can’t do anything.”
Then Upland’s defense added a score of their own after the score when Donovan Brown picked off Corin Berry’s pass and returned it to the house.
The Chargers avoided being shut out in the first half as they added three points by Gibbens, who booted a 40-yard field goal with five minutes left before intermission.
Upland sustained their 28-3 advantage throughout the third quarter as both squads exchanged punts. Then, midway through the fourth quarter, Bryan England added three points, giving his team a 31-3 lead.
Then, as the game came to a close, backup quarterback Joel Sanchez, who took over the snaps after Berry was knocked out of the game due to an injury, was able to give Charter Oak their first touchdown of the night when he hooked up with Legend Lyons, tallying the score at 31-10 when the final buzzer sounded.
With the win, Upland moved to 5-1 on the season and will try to extend its three-game winning streak as the Scots open Baseline league play against Damien next Friday night.
Charter Oak will try to end a five-game losing streak next week when the Chargers travel to Laguna Beach.