Renegades hold on to winning streak

Leanne Cave

The Bakersfield College football team will play its regular season finale at Memorial Stadium on Saturday against the College of the Canyons Cougars.
It should be an exciting game as the Renegades (9-0) and Cougars (8-1) will fight it out for the Western State Conference Mountain Division title.
“Canyons is a good football team, they run the spread offense (a lot of passing) and have talented athletes,” said Jeff Chudy, BC head coach. “We expect a great game from them.”
The Nov. 3 contest between BC and the Allan Hancock Bulldogs in Santa Maria before 1,950 fans was, as usual, a “backyard brawl.”
Each team had turnovers and was flagged for 85 yards a piece.
“We didn’t execute and we had way too many mental penalties,” Chudy said. “We can’t do that against Canyons.”
Hancock took its best shot at the Renegades, but to no avail, as BC beat the Bulldogs 36-23.
The first series against Hancock was vintage BC offense.
Jacob Bower, BC quarterback, connected on several key passes and capped a 51-yard drive with a nicely thrown 17-yard touchdown to wide receiver Brandon Banks.
Arturo Villa added the extra point and BC led, 7-0.
It looked as though Hancock had an answer to BC’s scoring drive on its initial possession as the Bulldogs managed to move the ball down to the Renegade 1-yard line but eventually settled for a 24-yard field goal by kicker Juan Velasco.
BC’S next score was courtesy of freshman running back Greg Williams.
Williams took the ensuing kickoff and raced 80 yards to the end zone, giving the Renegades a 13-3 lead. The extra point attempt was blocked by Hancock.
The Bulldogs’ defense had some bite on BC’s next possession as David Wolfe picked up a fumbled exchange and returned it 34 yards for a touchdown.
Velasco kicked the extra point making the score, 13-10.
The only score of the second quarter was a 19-yard FG by Villa. BC led 16-10 at the half.
The third quarter was as eventful as the first.
Hancock scored first on a 32-yard field goal by Velasco, bringing the Bulldogs to within 16-13.
One of the positive things in this contest for BC was the ground game that amassed 257 yards against a feisty Hancock defense.
Running back Pat Patterson rushed for 82 of those yards and scored BC’s third touchdown of the game as he scored from 6 yards out.
Villa added the extra point, and the Renegades led 23-13.
Then Hancock made things interesting by driving 56 yards and scoring on a 2-yard touchdown pass from Casey Cathcart to Christian Jesperson, Velasco kicked the extra point, and the Bulldogs had closed to 23-20.
Enter Bruce Frieson.
Frieson, a freshman from Toledo, rushed for 148 on 15 carries and put six more points on the board for BC when he romped 70 yards for a touchdown.
Villa added the extra point giving BC a 10-point cushion going into the fourth quarter.
“We have a stable of quality running backs,” Chudy said. “They do a great job for our offense.”
The kickers were vital to both teams. Villa added field goals of 25 and 34 yards in the fourth quarter, while Velasco kicked a 31-yarder for Hancock.
With 3:25 left on the clock, BC cornerback Dustin Bell intercepted the ‘Dogs last hopes of a comeback.
Bell has six interceptions this season.
Talking about his game-saving pick, Bell said, “They threw the ball, and I came down with it. It feels great.”
On Oct. 27 the Renegades improved to 8-0 when they traveled to L.A. West and routed the Oilers, 38-6.
Even though it was an overall team effort, it is important to note the efforts of running backs Ben Estill and Pat Patterson.
Estill rushed for 139 yards, while Patterson rushed for 107.
“I’m just glad I had the chance to run,” Estill said. “I want to do my part. There is so much talent in the backfield.”
The Renegades will face College of the Canyons in the regular season finale on Saturday at Memorial Stadium. Game time is scheduled for 4 p.m.