By Izaiah Cerratos
The Riverside City College Tigers beat the Saddleback City College Bobcats in a dominant team performance.
The Tigers entered this week’s contest with a record of 7-0. The Saddleback Bobcats held a record of 5-2 and were on a five-game win streak before the matchup.
RCC swiftly started the game when quarterback Jordan Barton connected with running back Bryce Strong on a 30-yard pass along the left sideline. This play would pave the way for Bryce Strong to score a rushing touchdown, giving the Tigers an early 6-0 lead.
The Tiger’s defense had one of its best performances of the season. The RCC defense held the Bobcats to 0 points and forced a miss on the lone field goal attempt for the Bobcats all afternoon. The Saddleback offense was on a roll and had scored 62 points in their previous matchup at Grossmont College.
Head Coach Tom Craft and his staff had the Tiger’s defense locked in this afternoon.
The Tiger’s defense has allowed 0 points in, holding three consecutive opponents scoreless during October.
The Tigers have outscored opposing opponents 169-0 since Oct. 1.
“Today’s shutout was a significant one,” said Craft. “We moved some pieces around mid-season and now this unit is making plays.”
The defense secured a crucial interception early in the first half, setting up RCC’s offense deep in Saddleback Territory.
“We’re a dominant group up front and in the back end,” said sophomore Markee Moorer, defensive end for the Tiger’s. “We know as a defensive group that we are very talented.”
Quarterback Jordan Barton dropped back on the read option pass and connected with Jesiah Cornell for the 25-yard touchdown pass. The Tigers extended their lead 20-0 in the first quarter.
The offensive line for the Tigers was key to the offense’s success against Saddleback College. The Bobcat defense line held its ground to start the game but the Tiger’s big offensive line wore down the Saddleback defense as the second half continued.
“We gotta be dominant going forward for these last two games,”said freshman right guard Doughless Telomasaid. “As a team, we gotta come ready to play now that we are getting closer to playoffs.”
RCC would open up the second half with a field goal pushing the lead to 30-0. The Tiger’s offense switched to a heavy run attack in the second half. The team relied on its running backs Bryce Strong and Ayinde Bankole.
Bankole gashed the Bobcat’s defense in the third quarter and then broke loose for a 40-yard touchdown run that would push the RCC lead to 36-0.
“Offense started quick and that is how we want to play,” Craft said. “We slowed down in the second half but put the game away with the run attack and chewed the clock.”
The special teams unit for the Tigers shined in the punt game as freshman punter Nathaniel Wallace-Dilling perfectly placed multiple of his punts within the Saddleback 10-yard line to back the Bobcats up against their goal line.
The Riverside City College Tigers will continue the regular season with an away game against The San Diego Mesa College Olympians on Nov.4.