Sometimes it only takes one type of play.
On Desert Vista’s first offensive play of the game, senior quarterback Cade Van Raaphorst sent a receiver in motion toward him, he faked the hand-off to the receiver and the took the ball himself up the middle for a 54-yard touchdown run.
Desert Vista ran the same read option play for three more touchdowns to shut down Cienega 47-21.
“We’re just trying to play to our strengths,” coach Dan Hinds said. “We got a quarterback that can run and we got some fly guys that can run. That’s what we’re trying to do. That’s what our offense is all about this year. Tonight we got it going and hopefully we can keep getting better at it.”
The Thunder’s second touchdown was the same play type of play but this time Van Raaphorst read the defensive end and gave the ball off to junior running back T.J. Roberts.
Roberts took to the outside and broke free for a 42-yard touchdown.
Unlike Roberts, senior wide receiver Richard Haywood did not get a touchdown Friday night. But he was the unsung hero of the offense and helped make the zone read work.
Haywood finished the game with six carries for 55 yards. His numbers are not impressive but on his first hand-off of the game he took it for 31 yards.
Therefore, every time he went in motion and pretended to take the hand-off, one of the Cienega linebackers went with him.
With one defender out of the box, van Raaphorst had a bunch of lanes to choose from.
“That’s how it’s supposed to work,” Hinds said. “You got guys who have speed on the edge and are supposed to spread things out and open things up in the middle. So when you got a guy like Richard Haywood with that kind of speed and quickness it helps things out a lot.”
Van Raaphorst finished the night with 12 carries for 86 yards and three rushing touchdowns. All three of his touchdowns came on the same play call.
The senior quarterback praised his offensive linemen for pushing the Cienega defenders but he also gave credit to Haywood.
“Those backers are so quick to fly out because of guys like Richard,” van Raaphorst said. “Once they see them going in motion and I pull it, it’s like a Red Sea parting. Our offense wouldn’t work without them. We like to get around edge, but if we see those backer flying out then our coaches up stairs and our coaches on the field will recognize it and it works perfect.”
For the second straight game the Thunder defense stepped up in the second half.
An interception thrown by van Raaphorst and a long kickoff return by Cienega senior wide receiver Christian Poe set up two Cienega touchdowns.
The Thunder went into the half with a 27-14 lead.
The defense came out in the second half with some energy and did not give up a defensive touchdown for the rest of the game.
Senior defensive end Jalen Jelks led the Thunder attack with another stellar performance wreaking havoc in the Cienega back field all night.
He had two sacks and one tackle for loss that combined for 20 negative yards for the Cienega offense.
The only touchdown Desert Vista gave up in the second half was another long kickoff return from Poe again.
It was an interesting night for special teams. The Thunder would either have breakdown or come up with a big play.
Not only did the Thunder struggle on kickoff return but they also missed two extra points.
Then linebacker Saxon McDonald blocked a punt and junior wide receiver Max Jensen returned for a touchdown.
“It was crazy because we would get one on special teams then we would give one up on special teams,” Hinds said. “They’re all things that we can shore up and fix and I got no doubt that we’re going to do that.”
Hubbard is a Tempe-based freelancer.
Desert Vista 47 North 21
DV 14 13 13 7 – 47
C 0 14 7 0 – 21
DV: QB Cade Van Raaphorst 54-yard run (K Connor Culp kick) 11:19
DV: RB T.J. Roberts 43-yard run (Culp kick) 7:36
DV: WR Max Jensen returns punt block (Culp kick) 9:34
C: WR Aaron Sermeno 2-yard run (K Marco Meza kick) 9:17
C: WR Francisco Dicochea 1-yard run (Meza kick) 4:52
DV: Van Raaphorst 3-yard pass to WR Jason King (Culp missed PAT) 0:15
DV: Van Raaphorst 6-yard run (K Garrison Schwartz kick) 7:13
C: WR Christian Poe 90-yard kickoff return (Meza kick) 7:00
DV: Van Raaphorst 1-yard run (Schwartz missed PAT) 1:38
DV: DB Anthony Reaves fumble return (Schwartz kick) 10:44
First downs: 12 8
Rushing: 34-230 27-55
Passing: 9-18-1-130 7-18-0-46
Penalties: 10-76 5-26
Fumbles-lost: 2-0 / 1-1
DV: QB Cade Van Raaphorst 8-17, 117 yards, 1 TD
12 carries, 86 yards, 3 rush TDs
RB T.J. Roberts 5 carries, 54 yards, 1 rush TD
C: WR Aaron Sermeno 4 carries, 12 yards, 1 rush 1 TD