📅05 October 2012
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By Robert Balajadia

The Bulldogs ground game was clicking in the third quarter thanks to steady running by Thomas Gutierez playing keep away from the Friars offense. (photo by Andre Gadia)

The Okkodo Bulldogs have taken pride in their defense all season long. The Bulldogs third ranked defense in points allowed per game added another opponent to their shutout list beating the FD Friars 7-0 on their homecoming night in last game of the regular season at the GW field.

Sophomore quarterback Leeray Zapatos scored the teams only touchdown of the game in the first quarter on the team’s second drive off a bad Friars punt that traveled less than five yards. Zapatos overcame a three interception game to pace the Bulldogs offense in the closing minutes.

“The touchdown was in result to our good defense. Throughout the whole season, they have been helping out. It looks like our defense is our offense because without them we wouldn’t be able to do anything.”

The Friars went 0-for-9 on offensive drives turning it over twice in the red zone thanks to the relentless pass rush the Bulldogs unleashed on the Friars managing four first half sacks. Defensive end RC Choban sacked Okiyama on third and long to force the Friars into the bad punt which ultimately ended in a Bulldogs touchdown.

Friars Jordan Ray Guevara came away with one of the FD’s three interceptions but the offense could not covert them into any points due to tough Bulldog defense. (photo by Andre Gadia)

Friars Tyler Okiyama had trouble connecting on the deep ball, overthrowing some of his favorite targets in Nicolas Aglubat and Bryton Cepeda along with the left over rain water making it difficult for receivers to haul in catches. Okiyama was picked off by Bulldogs Calvin Muna late in the second quarter but the Bulldog offense was unable to further the lead on a missed field goal.

The Friar offense was unable to move the ball on the ground forcing Okiyama to throw majority of the game. Okiyama was faced with a lot of third and long situations due to the Okkodo run stoppage.

The Bulldog defense knows that Okiyama can hurt a defense with his ability to throw the ball so Bulldog defensive coordinator Kellen Kawasaki had a specific game plan for the Friars young stud QB.

“We worked on a lot of pass coverages but at the same time we blitz when we have to blitz to pressure the quarterback. Key players on defense Calvin Muna, Thomas Gutierrez, Justin Santos and RC Choban are our four core guys on defense,” stated Kawasaki.

The Bulldogs used a long third quarter by eating up clock and allowing the Friars offensive only one possession.

Okkodo will finish with a season best (4-2) record while the Friars will end the regular season at (2-4). This win puts Okkodo in a tie with the Sanchez Sharks for second place and a probable three way tie if the GW Geckos beat the JFK Islanders tomorrow night to conclude all regular season activity.

Bulldogs RC Choban was a large reason why the Friars running game was nonexistent. Choban also managed to track down Friar QB Tyler Okiyama for a sack that help set up the Bulldogs only score of the game. (photo by Andre Gadia)

Bulldogs head coach Danny Cepeda was more than proud of his defense giving all the credit to Kawasaki for taking control of defensive schemes and how the defense operates. When asked about their opponent and how their defense will prepare against whomever they face in the playoffs next weekend, Kawasaki stated, “we will take on anybody right now. The kids are really gelling this time of the year, perfect timing so we will play anybody. These [Bulldogs] endured a lot of adversity on and off the field since the start of the season but every week the show up hungry wanting more and more. Every practice and every game, they show up to play giving it all they’ve got.”

Playoff  Tiebreaker

If the GW Geckos beat the JFK Islanders Saturday night in the season finale, the Bulldogs, Geckos and Sanchez Sharks all would finish at 4-2 – and all three have beaten each other in the regular season.

The next tiebreaker is the points allowed in those head-to-head matches, according to IIAAG President Marty Boudreau.

In this case, the Sharks allowed the least points against the Bulldogs and Geckos. The Bulldogs gave up the next fewest point. So the Sharks clinch second place, the Bulldogs third place and the Geckos fourth place.

Okkodo’s 4-2 record comes despite scoring the third-lowest amount of points on offense in the league ahead of only JFK and Southern.

Panthers finish undefeated

Guam High will have a week’s rest, earning the first-round bye after crushing the Southern Dolphins 49-6 on Homecoming Night. The Panthers will await the winner of the GW/FD quarterfinal matchup in two weeks in the semifinals.


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