Whitworth opened the Rod Sandberg era with a dominant defensive and offensive show Saturday as the Pirates pillaged Lewis & Clark 63-10 in the opening football game for both teams.
Behind Alan Stanfield’s spread offense, the Pirates racked up 357 passing yards, with several receivers having big days from four Pirates quarterbacks who played in front of 1,940 at the Pine Bowl.
“We had a lot of fun,” Sandberg said. “We had great energy from the crowd. What a wonderful setting to play a game.”
The defense, led by new coordinator Adam Richbart, did not allow the Pioneers to score an offensive touchdown and caused problems all day for the Lewis & Clark quarterbacks.
“I thought our effort was outstanding,” Richbart said. “The way we came out after halftime I thought was outstanding.”
Senior quarterback Bryan Peterson got the start and completed 10 of 15 passes for 86 yards, two touchdowns and an interception.
Sophomore Ian Kolste came in during the second quarter, as planned, and had an even bigger day. He completed 20 of 29 with 224 yards and four touchdowns.
The scoring got a boost from its defense when senior cornerback De’ Hall snatched the ball from a Pioneers receiver and raced 65 yards for a defensive touchdown.
“I didn’t want to be that guy who got caught, so I ran as hard as I could,” Hall said. “I was hoping we would come out and send a message. This definitely was a great start.”
The new spread offense produced immediately as the Pirates jumped out to a quick lead.
Peterson led a 60-yard opening drive that was highlighted by a 35-yard completion to Anthony Fullman, who missed all of 2013 because of injury.
Peterson went back to Fullman for a 3-yard touchdown pass that put the Bucs up 7-0 over the Pioneers with 13:35 left in the first quarter.
Fullman ended the day with six catches for 91 yards and two scores. Connor Williams, who also missed last year due to injury, had five catches for 44 yards and a touchdown. Last year’s leading receiver, Drew Clausen, had six catches for 59 yards and a score.
The Pioneers made yards during stretches but were only able to muster a 34-yard field goal in the first quarter and a 93-yard kickoff return for a touchdown by Curtis Shirey just before halftime.
Otherwise, it was all Pirates. They led 28-10 at the half and extended that lead to 49-10 by the end of the third quarter.
Duke Degaetano led Whitworth in rushing with 38 yards on seven carries. Freshman quarterback Kevin Thomas (Gonzaga Prep) turned a busted play into a 20-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter to complete the scoring at 63-10.
“We got just about everybody in, which was fun,” Richbart said. “A lot of those guys needed the work. There is nothing that replaces playing in a real game.”
Whitworth travels to California for the next two weeks. They play Saturday at Whittier and Sept. 20 at La Verne before returning home Sept. 27 to play Chapman at the Pine Bowl.
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