The magic endures in Murrieta as the Bronco winning streak was extended to 26 victories with the 31-16 victory Friday over Norco High Scool.
Norco proved to be a resilient, opportunistic opponent for the Broncos of Vista Murrieta High School.
Head Football Coach Coley Candaele’s usually mistake-free offensive machine sputtered and turned the ball over four times, including two Nick Stevens' interceptions in the first half.
It was up to Vista Murrieta’s league-leading defense to put the game away and advance the Broncos to round three of the CIF Southern sectional playoffs. The Broncos held Norco to a mere 133 yards of total offense. In fact, Norco only managed to gain 29 yards in the first three quarters.
Defensive linemen Tyler Cook and Curtis Bolton maintained the pressure all game long and both sacked the Norco quarterback Coltin Gerhart.
"It was a tough defensive game," said Vista Murrieta senior linebacker and team leader Bryce Smith. "We didn't play our best but we were able to shut down their offense. They played real tough defense."
The Broncos struck on their first possession, driving the ball 88 yards for the score. Stevens scampered 4 yards into the Norco end zone
for the touch down.
After falling behind 8-7 later that quarter, the Broncos regained the lead on a touch down run by Kishawn Holmes. Bezhawn Hill added his own 55-yard touch down run to give the Broncos a commanding 21-8 as the half ended.
Aaron Ruth kicked a 42 yard field goal for Vista Murrieta in the third quarter to extend the lead to 24-8.
Norco then made it a one possession game in the fourth quarter when Gerhart threw his second touchdown pass to Juan Acosta.
The Broncos responded when Su’a Cravens burst 69 yards down the sidelines into the Norco end zone, putting the game away 31-16 and eliminating the Cougars from CIF Southern Section Ford Championships, Sponsored by Farmers, Football Playoffs.
Next up for the defending CIF Southern Section Inland Division Champion Broncos will be another bunch of Cougars, this week from Rancho Cucamonga.