Chugiak wasted little time in taking control in a 48-3 nonconference victory Saturday at Ed Hollier Field in Kenai.
The Kardinals received the opening kickoff and started on their 20. On the first play, Chugiak’s Ace Chapple picked off Kardinals quarterback Chase Gillies at the 35 and return the ball to the 29. Then on Chugiak’s first play, quarterback Hunter Harr found Derryk Snell streaking up the field for a 29-yard scoring strike.
Time elapsed from the beginning of the game? Fifteen seconds.
“That was an incredible way to start off — scoring 15 seconds into the game when we had kicked off,” Chugiak coach Roger Spackman said after his team improved to 3-3. “I don’t think I’ve ever had that happen before. It got us some momentum.”
The Mustangs used that momentum to lead 21-3 after the first quarter and 48-3 at halftime.
“They executed,” Kenai coach Davis Lowery said after seeing a three-game winning streak snapped and falling to 3-3. “Chugiak was classy all the way. Hats off to them.”
Chugiak was able to rush 39 times for 309 yards on the way to a 362-199 advantage in total yards.
Snell led the way with two receiving touchdowns and a rushing touchdown. He rushed six times for 116 yards and also caught three balls for 44 yards.
“We were able to run the ball,” Spackman said. “Our offensive line did a good job.”
After a Bryant White 1-yard TD run and a 57-yard TD scamper by Snell, Kenai showed some signs of life late in the first quarter. The Kards marched down the field starting at their own 20. Zack Tuttle pounded the ball in from the 1-yard line, but illegal procedure moved the ball back to the 6 and Kenai had to settle for a Tuttle field goal.
On the ensuing drive, Chugiak had its lone turnover of the day, a fumble by Karletty Faamatainu recovered by Tuttle at the Chugiak 18. But the Mustangs defense forced Kenai into another field goal try, a 30-yarder which Tuttle missed.
From there, it took six plays for White to score again on a 3-yard run. A touchdown pass from Harr to Ramal Maad, a TD pass from Aaron Tomosulo to Snell and a scoring run by Faamatainu would finish Kenai off before the half.
Lowery was happy with the way his group was able to rebound and keep the game scoreless in the second half.
“We just wanted to focus on every snap in the second half,” Lowery said. “As these kids have all year, they showed heart and didn’t give up.”
At 2-0 in the Northern Lights Conference, with games left against Palmer and Soldotna, Lowery said the Kardinals still control their playoff destiny.
“All our major season goals are ahead of us,” he said.
Seniors Nick Beeson, Jonathan Delgado, Craig Garrett, Gillies, Jonathan Hawkins, Avery Hieber, Tristan Landry, Job Taylor, Ryan Williams and Matthew Zorbas were honored before the game for senior day.
Mustangs 48, Kardinals 3
Chugiak 21 27 0 0 —48
Kenai 3 0 0 0 —3
Chu — Snell 29 pass from H. Harr (Morey kick), 11:45.
Chu — White 1 run (Morey kick), 9:13.
Chu — Snell 57 run (Morey kick), 7:08.
Ken — Tuttle 28 field goal, 2:45.
Chu — White 3 run (Morey kick), 10:47.
Chu — Maad 6 pass from H. Harr (Morey kick), 9:27.
Chu — Snell 5 pass from Tomosulo (Morey kick), 6:59.
Chu — Faamatainu 4 run (kick failed), 2:54
First downs 13 10
Rushes-yards 39-309 28-38
Passing yards 53 161
Comp-att-int 6-10-0 10-24-1
Return yards 16 0
Punts 2-36.5 6-28.0
Fumbles 3-1 1-0
Penalties 11-100 13-125
Rushing — Chugiak: Snell 6-116, Faamatainu 4-55, H. Harr 5-(-18), White 3-37, Sison 5-41, Tomosulo 2-(-4), Jones 5-39, Johnson 2-16, Maad 2-15, A. Harr 1-5, Rand 1-7. Kenai: Gillies 16-20, Tuttle 10-20, Riddall 2-(-2).
Passing — Chugiak: H. Harr 4-7-0—38, Tomosulo 2-3-0—15. Kenai: Gillies 10-24-1—161.
Receiving — Chugiak: Snell 3-44, Faamatainu 1-1, Maad 1-6, Sison 1-2. Kenai: Dunham 1-0, Tuttle 3-96, Heiber 2-20, Riddall 4-45.
Missed FG — Chugiak: Morey 28; Kenai: Tuttle 30.