By JASON EPP
• Daily Leader
TURPIN — After a sluggish star, it was a runaway victory for the
Turpin Cardinals who rushed for 350 yards on their way to a 43-0
Homecoming win over the Mooreland Bearcats. Turpin averaged over 8.5
yards per carry, and only felt the need to put the ball in the air
three times. The defense pitched their second shutout of the season,
and has yet to give up a point at home.
But even with the lopsided win coaches and players knew the Cardinals
had been slow to get going. “Our think our guys were a little
overconfident, and were maybe looking ahead to Okeene,” Cardinals
coach Mario Mendoza said. Cardinal quarterback Konner Hood added that
the team was “sluggish at the start”.
Turpin appeared to be in full gear on their first drive moving from
their own 38 to the Mooreland 1. But the Cards turned the ball over
on downs when they were denied the endzone on two consecutive plays
from the one.
On Mooreland’s first possession Turpin allowed a 20 yard pass play
that allowed the Bearcats to get out of a third and 9 from their own
two. The Bearcats also converted a fake punt for a 47 yard gain on 4
and 8 from their 24. Turpin finally forced a punt after 14 plays and
took over at their own 13.
Turpin once again drove deep into Bearcat territory and had a first
and 10 at the Mooreland 14. But sacks on two of the next three plays
led to a missed field goal from 46 yards by Rogelio Regelado.
One play later Payton Eggers recovered a fumble at the 29, and it
seemed to awaken the Cardinals from their slumber. Three plays later,
Kade Goodwin swept wide to the left and made his way into the end
zone from 19 yards out. Regelado’s extra point was good and Turpin
led 7-0 with 8:09 left in the first half.
The Cardinals got a quick three-and-out from their defense, and
Konner Hood scampered 24 yards on a quarterback keeper to the 10.
Matt Mendoza carried for nine and finished of the drive with a one
yard plunge. The kick failed, but Turpin led 13-0.
Mooreland mounted a drive that lasted 15 plays, but left the field at
halftime empty handed when the Cardinal defense stopped them on
fourth and three from the 12.
Mooreland took a gamble early in the second half when they went for
it on fourth and inches from their own 22. The Cardinal defense
stuffed the middle and Turpin took over deep in Bearcat territory.
Hood scored from eight yards out just two plays later and Turpin
increased their lead to 19-0.
Late in the third Mooreland once again drove deep into Cardinal
territory, and had a second and goal from the two. But the Turpin
defense denied the Bearcats and took over on downs. Mendoza then
quickly got Turpin out of bad field possession when he ran 70 yards
off the right tackle to set the Cardinals up at the Bearcat 27. But
the drive soon stalled and Turpin settled for a Regelado 31 yard
field goal to increase their lead to 22-0 early in the fourth quarter.
Clinton Toney made consecutive defensive plays that helped Turpin’s
offense widen the scoring gap. First, Toney made a toe grabbing
tackle that forced Mooreland to start the drive at their own 7. Then
on the next play, Toney intercepted the Bearcat pass and returned it
12 yards to the three yard line. Mendoza scored on the next play, and
Turpin led 29-0 with 9:50 remaining.
Turpin scored on their third consecutive possession when Hood hit
Cale Longhofer for a 32 yard touchdown to increase Turpin’s lead to
Reserve running back Stern Douglas added the final score for the
Cardinals with a 36 yard TD run with 1:28 left to make it 43-0 in
favor of the Cardinals.
Konner Hood led the way on offense with 16 rushes for 143 yards and a
TD. He also was 3 for 3 passing for 52 yards and a TD. Matt Mendoza
rushed 13 times for 121 yards and two TDs. Cody Levens caught two
passes for 20 yards, and Cale Longhofer had 1 for 32 yards and a
Defensively, Clinton Toney had 10 tackles and 2 interceptions. Aaron
Kuns led the Cardinals with 12 tackles, and Cole Wright and Chance
Dye each had two tackles for a loss. Payton Eggers added a fumble
recovery for the defense.
Next, Turpin will host undefeated and No. 1 ranked Okeene next Friday
night at 7:30. Coach Mendoza said about the next opponent, “Okeene is
a great team, and we are going to challenge our guys to know they can
play with them.”
Turpin is now 3-1 on the season and 2-1 in district.
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