PROSSER — Two first quarter interceptions by Sunnyside High School senior Jonathan Sanchez led to 16 unanswered points as the Grizzlies rolled to a 35-13 non-conference road win over the Prosser Mustangs at Art Fiker Stadium last Friday night.
SHS Coach Jon Lobbestael was ecstatic at his team’s performance, “We just prepped a lot. Prosser has an incredibly high amount of stuff and they are good at everything. . . we tried to get as good as possible at recognizing what they were going to do.”
He added his team’s defensive play exceeded expectations through their physicality. Lobbestael noted, “The kids were really physical, more physical than I thought we would be the first game.”
First season varsity quarterback, sophomore Logan Rodriguez said, “We watched film, we knew what we had to do, we came out and we did it.”
Rodriguez threw for 202 yards, one touchdown, one interception and completed 12 out of 21 total passing attempts.
Lobbestael addressed his young quarterback’s brand of football, “I thought he did a good job, he keeps the ball safe. He’s smart, he seems to be really calm and collected. He doesn’t get flustered really easily. . .”
Prosser’s Head Coach Corey Ingvalson spoke about the game, “Oftentimes when you have a game like this, you have to give credit to the other guys. I thought Sunnyside played really well, they played really physical.”
Prosser Mustang senior quarterback Haden Hicks suffered a season ending injury with a broken collarbone.
According to Ingvalson, Hicks’ tenure as a Mustang has brought enormous contributions to the game. “Hayden is a special player. He has that ability to get outside of the pocket and make some things happen,” Ingvalson added.
The Mustangs scored on a “Hail Mary” pass play right before the half, cutting Sunnyside’s lead 22-7. Grizzly Nation filled the visitor’s section and cheered the team as they left the field for intermission.
Sunnyside fumbled the second half kickoff and Prosser took advantage of the costly turnover and punched it in for a touchdown. Following the extra point, Sunnyside led 22-13.
The Mustangs regained the momentum, but the Grizzlies’ offense answered right back. Sophomore Devin Escamilla capped off an impressive drive with a run up the middle for a touchdown, making the score 28-13 with 9:44 remaining in the third quarter.
The Grizzlies’ defense dominated the game from the opening with relentless pressure on Prosser quarterback Hicks while the secondary’s coverage made a total of three interceptions.
Early in the fourth quarter, SHS senior wide receiver Mike Rivera caught a 77-yard pass and catch from Rodriguez for a touchdown to make it 35-13.
Grizzly sophomore, Devin Escamilla recorded three catches for 23 yards and ran for 90 total yards and scored one touchdown. Jonathan Sanchez caught four catches for 42 yards and two interceptions for 50 combined yards.
Quarterback Hicks threw for 202 total passing yards. He was 18 for 26 completed attempts and had 12 yards rushed. He threw three interceptions and one touchdown.
Senior, Case Reinmuth had four catches for 98 yards. Sophomore QB Kaiden Rivera was 4 for 10 and threw for 56 passing yards.
In the two-year re-rivalry, season opening football games, Sunnyside has won both contests.