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Bonita Airs It Out on a Sultry Night with Pass-Happy 34-12 Win Over Poly

September 9, 2017
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Bonita, led by No. 8 Andrew Flores, came in fired up for its first home game of the 2017 season.

LA VERNE, California, September 8, 2017 — Now it may be a little too early in the season to draw conclusions, but for at least for one player, J.P. Andrade, it seemed like a coming-out party on Friday night at Glenn Davis Stadium in La Verne, where the junior quarterback slung four touchdown passes to three different receivers in a convincing 34-12 win over the Riverside Poly Bears.

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The beneficiaries were John Harris on a 7-yarder in the first quarter, Harris again on a 23-yard rainbow pass in the second, and Aalias Williams on a 30-yard touchdown toss and Ethan Durham on a 26-yard hook-up in the third.

“We definitely have some guys who can make plays,” said Coach Aguilar moments after the contest. “They make J.P.’s job a little easier, but we need to continue working on what we need to do.

“It’s only Week 3.”

Bonita presented a smothering defense led by No. 15 Daniel Lopez, No. 63 Mauricio Mendoza and No. 40 Victor Sepulveda.

On its first drive of the game, Bonita moved the ball well on the ground and in the air. The first touchdown was set up by completions to Harris and Durham before running back Gypsy Mideiros lit up the scoreboard with a 12-yard off-tackle scamper into the end zone.

Bonita struck again with 1:11 in the first when Andrade connected with Harris in the corner of the end zone to put the Bearcats up 14-0 after the two-point conversion. The touchdown drive was aided by a leaping 37-yard reception by Williams.

The second quarter played out a little like a Keystone Cops bloopers reel. With 10:27 left in the second, Poly’s Noah Perez punched in a 1-yard touchdown to bring the score to 14-6. Poly had been the beneficiary of two Bonita personal fouls on the drive.

Aalias Williams

Bonita responded by marching down the field and appeared to score on a pass from Andrade to Williams, but Williams was flagged for pushing off. On the very next play, Andrade was picked off by Poly’s Randy Wright, who subsequently fumbled the ball back to Bonita. On the play, Bonita actually gained positive yardage. But again Bonita squandered its good fortune on an ensuing fumble by Andrade.

Finally, Bonita got things straightened out with 1:40 left in the second when Andrade threw a high-arching 23-yard pass to Harris who was backpedaling and falling down before he hauled in the majestic touchdown pass. Bonita now appeared to be in cruise control mode, leading 20-6.

But with seven seconds left in the half, with Poly in desperation mode and Bonita defending against the deep ball, Jermaine Henderson took a dump pass and raced 40 yards to paydirt to make the score Bonita 20, Poly 12 at the intermission.

Aguilar definitely wasn’t pleased with the breakdown: “You definitely don’t want to go into half-time giving up a score,” he said after the game.

After going into the locker room, Bonita made some adjustments and pitched a shut-out in the second half. Linebacker Andrew Flores was in on several tackles, but the most impressive defensive play of the night might have been turned in by Bonita’s Daniel Oseguera who ran down one of Poly’s speed running backs, almost undressing the player on the field. Although he was flagged for a “horse collar,” the play showed that Bonita was flying to the ball all night.

John Harris

Other defensive gems: Nathan Otto blocked a 36-yard field goal attempt by Poly to help preserve the second-half shutout. Kyle Nixon also had a pick for the Bearcats. On the defensive line, Lucas Kelly also played big. But it was truly a collective defensive effort.

Meanwhile, back on offense, Andrade and Williams finally found the end zone with 9:35 in the third quarter when Andrade found a leaping Williams to gather in his 30-yard pass. Bonita later completed its scoring for the night when Andrade connected with Durham on a 26-yard touchdown pass with 3:11 in the third.

Bonita’s aerial assault was breathtaking. Also aiding the offensive attack were Joshua Ferrel, who kept a late scoring drive alive with a big third-down reception, and Joseph Reynolds, a ball control specialist for the Bearcats.

Bonita definitely put on a show for its first home appearance of 2017. But if the players gave the fans all they wanted and more, it’s still unclear whether they addressed all of their coaches’ concerns. There were the two fumbles by Andrade, although they were overshadowed by his otherwise pinpoint passing, and some blown assignments.

It’s all good for Joshua Ferrel, No. 7.

“It was a new thing for him,” Aguilar said about his rapidly developing quarterback. “Both times it was his fault, and that’s the thing about J.P., when he does make mistakes, he definitely owns up to them. He’ll definitely come back wiser and better after doing so.”

Bonita definitely looked like the superior team on this evening, but the coach doesn’t want the players, coaches or fans to get ahead of themselves, knowing the calendar shows that it’s still only September.

“I think it is still too early to tell,” Aguilar said, when asked to size up the progress of his squad.  “At this point last year, we were 2-1, so it’s game by game. We’re definitely happy with the win, but now it’s time to get ready for Brea starting tomorrow.” 

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Before the start of the Bonita/Poly football game, Bonita High School Athletic Director Michelle Okayama, ATC, accepted a check from Bonita team doctors, James Meyers DO; Jay Shaw, DO; and Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center Physical Therapist Sapan Thakur, DPT, OCS, for the proceeds earned through the annual PVHMC “$$$ For Physicals” fundraiser.

This year a portion of the proceeds was used to provide Bonita with a pop-up tent to offer shelter to injured athletes and athletic training staff.

Every spring the physicians from the Sports Medicine Center give their time and expertise to provide Bonita athletes with CIF-mandated, pre-participation exams.

Over the years, the SMC has donated $26,055 back to Bonita for much-needed athletic training supplies. In addition, Dr. Meyers, Dr. Shah and SMC provide Bonita football with free game coverage.

The “$$$ for Physicals” program was initiated in 2006. Since then, the Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center has donated $141,105 back to local high schools.

Sports coverage provided by La Verne Realtor Colleen Bennett (Sotheby’s International Realty, 909.374.4744) and our growing list of sponsors. To advertise, email us at cmbenzz@gmail.com.

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