Buchanan Defeats Edison, Gears up for League Play

Senior cornerback Robert Johnson has played a big role in Buchanan’s stout defense. That defense has helped the Bears get off to a 4-1 start. (Gabe Camar

The Buchanan Bears ran wild over the Edison Tigers in their final tune-up before league play, rushing for four touchdowns in a 45-14 rout Friday at McLane Stadium.

Senior running back Caden Rodgers accounted for three of the rushing scores, while junior Michael Runnels rushed for a touchdown and caught one as well.

Buchanan (4-1) had a bye week after its close 34-31 home loss to Los Alamitos on Sept. 10. Prior to the offensive shootout at Veterans Memorial Stadium, the Bears limited its first three opponents — Kingsburg, Bullard, and Paso Robles — to a combined seven points.

The defense returned to form against Edison. Cornerback Robert Johnson returned an interception for a touchdown with 2:48 remaining in the first half, giving the Bears a 38-0 lead at halftime.

The Tigers (1-4), who averaged 30.5 points per game entering Friday’s contest, did not score until four minutes left in the third quarter. Runnels responded with a 55-yard touchdown run to close the third. There was a running clock during the fourth quarter.

Johnson’s pick-six capped a 21-point second quarter for the Bears. Quarterback Jayden Mandal threw his only touchdown pass of the evening with 2:10 left in the first quarter, a 35-yard pass to Runnels.

Buchanan won its fifth straight game over Edison dating back to 2015.

Despite the big win, the Bears sit behind the Central Grizzlies in both section and state rankings. Central and Buchanan are No. 1 and 2, respectively, in the Central Section rankings on CalPreps, which will be used to determine playoff seeding this season.

According to Cal-Hi Sports’ state rankings, Central is No. 19 and Buchanan is No. 24 in the state. Both schools will settle the score next Thursday, Oct. 7, but the Bears will first host its TRAC opener against Clovis West on Friday, Oct. 1.

There is no reason for Buchanan to look ahead of its next opponent, either. Clovis West is 3-2 with key victories over Damonte Ranch (Reno), Edison, and Bullard.

Gabriel Camarillo has written for the Clovis Roundup since August 2019 and follows high school athletics, Fresno State football and former Clovis Unified student-athletes. Gabe also writes for The Collegian as a staff sports writer and works at One Putt Broadcasting as a board op for 940 ESPN radio.