The visiting Pacific Lutheran Stingrays from Torrance made quite a bit of noise during their warm-ups
Saturday, Sept. 15 — energetic, strident chanting and clapping in unison — a pre-game ritual some teams stage as an attempt to intimidate opponents.
But the Broncos didn’t take the bait, nor were they intimidated in the least. In fact it was the home-town Broncos that made the only noise that truly matters — numbers on the scoreboard — once the game was well underway.
At the end of the first quarter, Coast Union had built a 41-8 lead over the Stingrays — and this was a Pacific Lutheran team that had not allowed a single point scored against them in their previous two games.
The Stingrays “really, really put on a good show before the game,” said Bronco head coach Chuck Garcia. “They talked a good game — let me put it that way.”
But thanks to the speed, quick reactions and well-timed execution of the Coast Union offense—and a stingy, aggressive defense — the Broncos were up 61-8 at halftime. And because the team is blessed with quickness and the ability to run or pass seemingly at will, Coast Union racked up 400 yards in total offense and won the game 68-16.
That makes three dominating wins in a row for the Broncos. Still, Garcia and his offensive coach Charlie Casale fully expect to see their team challenged as the season continues. “Every opponent from now on we expect will be a little tougher,” Garcia explained.
“That’s what we want. We want to play tough opponents. There are some good opponents on the horizon,” the coach explained, noting that Friday, Sept. 21, the Broncos travel to San Pedro to take on Rolling Hills Preparatory High School in a 3 p.m. game.
The head coach is pleased with the performance of his team, but he asserts that “Honestly, we haven’t given anybody a full four-quarter effort yet, and that’s what we’re looking for.”
Coast Union quarterbacks Nolan Baldwin and Alex Bautista made the most of their opportunities. Baldwin scored five touchdowns and ran for 133 yards while backup Bautista scored a pair of touchdowns and scampered for 156 yards — including a long run for a score on the Broncos’ first play from scrimmage. Austin Eide chipped in with two touchdowns for Coast Union.
Oscar Catalan continued his quality kicking, nailing 7 of 9 points after and booming kickoffs beyond
the Stingray’s end zone — making any attempt at a run-back a moot point.
Binh Trieu led the team with four and a half tackles, and Dylan Vialpando added four, including three straight in the second half. Luis De Alba made three and a half tackles, Chuy Nunez and Michel Gonzalez each contributed two and a half, and Lane Sutherland, Tommy Moreno and Grant Magnuson each had two tackles.
Emmany Godinez recovered a fumbled punt and made an interception and Sutherland pressured the Stingray quarterback into making errant throws while aler tly knocking down two passes.
Offensive mentor Casale explained that the success Coast Union has shown thus far is in large part to quality practices. “The key for our kids is they work hard in practice. The kids have really bought into what we’re doing and it shows during the games.”
Casale adds certain offensive plays each week and coaches have the team working on eliminating penalties — “which we work on every day” — and on being “ready to go” come game time.
Garcia said that “we win games during the week. We work hard and put in our game plan and push these guys to do what they know how to do. We’re not perfect. But the effort and the blocking and tackling has improved so much and it’s preparing us for what’s in front of us.”
The game at 3 p.m. Friday, Sept. 21, in Southern California will be heard live on KMGQ-FM, 103.5; it streams live on www.kteafm.com.