Prep football: Piner keeps rolling with 53-14 win

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Despite a relatively slow start from its high-flying offense, the Piner High School football team was able to beat Miramonte High School 53-14 Friday night in Santa Rosa to continue its unbeaten season.

“I think it’s about time, I can’t lie. I’ve been watching the Piner teams in the past and I’ve been watching the games and I knew the kids had more fight in them. I’m a teacher on campus, I know they got more fight and it was good for them to finally prove it to themselves,” Piner head coach Terence Bell said.

The Prospectors (5-0 overall with North Bay League-Redwood play yet to begin) came into the game hot after not allowing a single score in their first four games and dropping 244 points on their opponents during that win streak.

“My expectations are for them to keep it going, they shouldn’t stop, and we won’t stop,” Bell said. “I’ve got a couple complaints already, I can’t lie about that, but I’m not going to tell them to stop. If I look up the past scores over the last three years there has been more than five times that we’ve been beat by 40 so for me to tell them to stop now I feel like I’d be contradicting my strategy, which is to play one play at a time and like it’s 0-0.”

Piner looked to keep rolling behind the arm of senior quarterback Yonaton Isack, who has looked impressive early in the season after throwing for more than 1,300 yards, 25 touchdowns and only four interceptions entering Friday’s game.

Arguably, Miramonte (3-2 overall from the Diablo-Foothill League) was the toughest opponent the Prospectors had faced yet but would prove to be no match for the pass-heavy attack of Piner, which after trailing for the first time this season answered with a 21-point second quarter to ultimately decide the outcome.

“I think they heard a lot of the talk ‘that we hadn’t played anybody’ or ‘this is going to be our toughest test’ and they rose to the occasion so I’m pretty proud of them right now,” Bell said.

The Prospectors started with a bang as Isaac Torres returned the opening kickoff for a touchdown to take an early 6-0 lead.

But the Matadors’ offense immediately answered with a 60-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Matt Meredith to Reed Callister to go up, 7-6. That score ended Piner’s defensive shutout streak.

After a defensive battle for most of the quarter, the Prospectors’ Isack found Torres on a short 5-yard passing touchdown to take back the lead, putting Piner ahead 13-7 heading into the second quarter.

Following a long pass from Isack to Michael Collins, the Prospectors found themselves once again in enemy territory and capped off the drive with another 5-yard touchdown pass to Torres, increasing the lead to 20-7 midway through the second quarter.

An interception by Adonis Gutierrez put Piner’s offense on the Matadors’ 36-yard line late in the second quarter, and on the very next play Isack hit Sumail Berhe on a screen for the score.

The Prospectors led 34-7 at halftime, following Isack’s 9-yard touchdown pass to Torres and Miramonte’s 5-yard touchdown pass from Meredith to Callister in the final seconds of the quarter.

To start the second half, Collins’ interception put the Prospectors offense in their opponent’s territory, and Adrian Torres took advantage scoring on a 21-yard touchdown run.

Piner did not let up from there, scoring on a 36-yard pass to Torres and a 9-yard pass to Collins. And with the clock running in the fourth the Prospectors were able to easily walk away with their fifth straight victory.

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