BC football moves into rankings

BC football moves into rankings

Elias C. Ahumada

The Rengades special teams celebrates after blocking a punt that led to a touchdown. BC won the game by a final of 34-31.

Daniel Ojeda, Sports Editor

The Bakersfield College football team ran its winning streak to a season high three straight games as the Renegades knocked off Cerritos College by the score of 34-31 on Homecoming night.

The win not only evened BC’s record at four wins and four losses, but also catapulted the Renegades back into the California Community Athletic Association state top 25.

The 22nd ranked Renegades raced to an early lead and seemed poised for a blowout win before having to withstand a late Cerritos comeback. The win was BC’s third in the last four games and was also the fifth straight game the Renegades had played that was decided by three points or less.

On BC’s opening drive, quarterback Tarek Yaeggie drove the Renegades downfield before finding Marquise Johnson for a 37-yard touchdown, giving BC an early 7-0 lead in the first quarter.

On the ensuing drive, the Renegade defense was able to cause a fumble that was scooped up by Darren Adjei who ran it back for a 24-yard touchdown.

“I saw it on the ground, I picked it up and scored. Everyone did a great job blocking and causing the fumble,” said Adjei.

Despite the fumble, Cerritos was able to block the PAT and return it the length of the field for a safety, cutting BC’s lead to 13-2.

After a touchdown and two-point conversion had Cerritos down only 13-10, Yaeggie found Khalin Smith open for a 15-yard touchdown that put the Renegades up 20-10.

The second quarter was a defensive showdown as the Renegades managed to hold Cerritos scoreless. The Renegade offense was also held scoreless, but BC managed to score with just over two minutes remaining before halftime as the defense blocked a punt that was recovered in the end zone by Justin Nieto for a touchdown. This gave the Renegades a 27-10 lead heading into halftime.

After each team had exchanged a three and out, BC was driving downfield before Yaeggie had a pass intercepted and returned all the way for a Cerritos touchdown.

On the next BC possession, however, Yaeggie was able to atone for his mistake as he drove the offense downfield before once again finding Smith for a 12-yard touchdown and extending BC’s lead to 34-17.

That score would be the last for the BC offense as they were held scoreless in the fourth quarter.

Cerritos was able to make the game into a nail bitter despite a 17-point deficit in the fourth quarter.

With just under nine minutes left in the game, Cerritos was able to score two touchdowns to cut the deficit to 34-31, but any hope Cerritos had of pulling out the win was dashed when the Renegades recovered the last onside kick and ran out the clock.

With the win, the Renegades winning streak was extended to three games and also kept the confidence level rising.

“We feel like we have become a different team from the first half of the season and that we can do some really good things,” said Smith, who was on the end of two receiving touchdowns.

The reliable offense was aided by a defense that managed to score and come up with stops whenever the team needed.

The defense had a fumble recovery and also blocked a punt that led to scores. Just before the half, the defense also stripped the ball from a Cerritos receiver at the one yard line halting what would have likely been a touchdown and momentum killer for the Renegades.

“I thought we played our best game of the season until we started to make mistakes in the fourth quarter,” said BC coach Jeff Chudy.

On the day, Yaeggie finished with 214 passing yards to go along with three touchdown passes. Xavier Williams rushed for 68 yards on 9 carries, while Smith led the way for the Renegade receivers with 95 yards receiving on eight catches.

The Renegades have a bye week before returning to the field for the last two games of the season. The penultimate game is on the road against Pasadena City College before finishing the season against Ventura College at home on November 15.