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SHARKS INCH PAST FRIARS

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By Robert Balajadia

Sharks Dondre Barnes scored the only points in the game with a huge 90-yard run on only the Sharks second play! (photo by Jesse Castro)

Football is officially back as Saturday concluded the final set of games during opening weekend as the Simon Sanchez Sharks squeezed a close 6-0 win over the Father Duenas Friars at the Okkodo field.

For the second straight game only one team managed to reach the end zone while shutting out the opposing team. The Sharks biggest play came on their second possession as junior running back Dondre Barnes took a hand-off for a 90-yard touchdown.

“I got the ball and cut through the hole. My coach has been telling me every day in practice to look for that cut back because it’s going to be there and I finally did it. I didn’t do that last year but I’m doing it this year,” stated Barnes.

The Sharks had one touchdown called back in the third quarter due to an illegal block in the back. Sharks running back Daniel Cruz made a nifty bounce to the outside while avoiding three Friar defenders before cashing what would have been a dagger. The penalty forced the Sharks to replay the downs in which they were not able to replicate the touchdown.

The Friars came out of halftime with momentum after a big run play for a first down. A third down series later, quarterback Tyler Okiyama caught the Sanchez secondary sleeping tossing a well placed ball to a wide open Bryton Cepeda who could not corral the catch despite beating his defender after the snap.

Neither team performed well on third down as the Friars and Sharks completed only 1-8 third down conversions. The Friars forced seven turnovers but were unable to convert any of them into points. The Sharks managed to force four turnovers but majority of them wounded up back in the hands of the Friars getting only 2-4 fourth down conversions to go.

Sharks Daniel Cruz tries to hurdle a couple of Firars and his own teammate to gain a couple of extra hard earned yards. (photo by Jesse Castro)

Aside from the gnat infestation, Shark fans wanted to see a few pass plays yelling for them to “pass the ball” but almost every offensive snap resulted in a running play. The Friars had a balanced showing of pass and run plays but the stingy Shark defense would not allow the Friars past the first down marker.

Offense seems to be a problem most schools are facing having a bunch of new players, systems and even coaching staffs. Barnes is happy for the win but knows that the offense is going to have to do a lot more if they want to stand out in the league.

When asked about the offensive struggles Barnes stated that, “Our defense is good but on offense we just need to make our blocks. We will put up more points next time.”

The Sharks play the Guam High Panthers next week, the only team that managed to score in double figures during opening weekend. The Friars will take the weekend off with a bye.

Panthers 40, Islanders 0

Offense seems to be the biggest problem facing all the high schools during opening weekend, except the Panthers. Guam High is off to another strong start to the season with a big win over the Islanders. The Panthers have made it to two straight championship games and are looking to be an early season favorite in being the only team to have multiple touchdowns/double digit points. The Panthers will face off against the Sharks next weekend.

 

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