The Paso Robles High School football team’s defense had struggled to stop opposing offenses in its last three games, but that wasn’t the case Friday night at War Memorial Stadium.
After giving up an average of 35 points in the past three, the Bearcats held the Clovis North offense in check and came out with a 24-7 win to stay perfect on the season with a five-game winning streak.
Paso Robles was leading 10-7 when Clovis North drove the ball down the field as halftime neared. With no timeouts and the ball at the Paso Robles 2-yard line, Nick Montelongo stuffed a run on third down as the clock ticked under 30 seconds. Clovis North scrambled to get back to the line of scrimmage for fourth down and was able to snap the ball, but Paso Robles linebacker Nolan Binkele burst into the backfield followed by a swarm of crimson for the stop.
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The Paso Robles crowd roared, and the players sprinted off the field and into the locker room.
“We were energized,” Paso Robles head coach Rich Schimke said of the play. “The defense is starting to put it together. ... They were criticized, they have been having a hard time this year and for them to come up big was great. The defense was stellar up front.”
The Clovis North offense was held to just 152 total yards.
Schouten Steps Up
On the first drive of the second half, Paso Robles moved the ball right down the field. Quarterback Steven Schouten hit running back Christian Erickson on a short swing pass as a blitz closed in for a 27-yard touchdown.
With the Clovis North defense keying on Erickson (13 carries for 50 yards) and the run game, Schouten took advantage. The senior and first-year starter had by far his most efficient game of the season, going 13 of 15 for 186 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions.
Schouten’s 54-yard touchdown to Seth Matthysse opened the scoring in the first quarter, and his 15-yard touchdown to Binkele in the third quarter closed it out.
Go For Gold
Leading the way for the Paso Robles defense was Richard Goldammer. The senior linebacker was all over the back of talented Clovis North quarterback Brent Bailey. Goldammer had three sacks and a fumble recovery that set up the Bearcats’ final touchdown.
He also had two catches for 26 yards on offense.
When the Bearcats are done enjoying the win and get back to work, the first thing Schimke will likely talk about is penalties. Paso Robles had 13 for 90 yards in the game. They ranged from offsides to false starts to personal fouls.
Paso Robles (5-0) will play its next three games at home starting with Sierra Canyon next Friday.