By Jeremiah Dollins
After a disappointing opening night game against Alta Loma, the Colton Yellowjackets came together and shut out their crosstown rivals, Bloomington High School, 40-0.
This victory comes on the heels of a frustrating week for the Yellowjackets in which their players only held one-and-a-half practices due to a COVID-related quarantine.
“The boys battled through adversity all week,” Coach Ray Rodriguez said postgame. “The boys came out and fought hard. They started fast. The boys fought all night, and that’s why I’m proud of them.”
Colton jumped all over Bloomington from the opening kickoff. Quarterback Gabriel Aparicio threw the first of five touchdown passes to Bryce Martinez on the Yellowjacket’s first possession, and they never looked back.
“We played better as a team,” Aparicio said. “Everyone’s getting better. We all did our jobs, and as a result, we won the game.”
Aparicio put up big numbers, but he was not the only standout for the crimson and gold. Their electrifying receiving team showed off their full arsenal, with Bryce Martinez, Xavier Sandoval, and Steven Medina each finding the end zone twice.
Medina picked up back-to-back touchdowns in the second quarter on a thrilling catch, followed by an interception on the defensive end during Bloomington’s next possession.
Colton’s offense was not the only thing clicking. Their defense frustrated the Bruins all night, racking up five sacks, including two by Alexandro Ruiz. They swarmed the ball on every possession, making it impossible for Bloomington to establish their run game.
The story of the night, however, was the way in which the Yellowjackets came together as a team after a scary and challenging week to put together a complete game against a local rival.
The team was focused and edgy, as evidenced late in the first half when senior Linebacker Abeal Sanchez punched a Bloomington player after the Bruin was disqualified for his second unsportsmanlike conduct penalty.
Sanchez was ejected from the game, with a ruling on his conduct forthcoming from CIF.
The Yellowjackets now turn their attention to their first road game of the season in two weeks against Arroyo Valley High. Next week’s bye could not have come at a better time, as the team will be able to resume a full practice schedule.