Nothing can drive a coach crazier than inconsistent play; just ask Clovis West Head Coach Tim Randall.
After his squad lost Thursday night 26-13 to Bullard, he questioned whether the team he saw on the McLane Stadium turf was his or not.
Randall surely thought it didn’t look like the Golden Eagles he knew, the team that started the season 2-0.
“Tonight, our players made a lot of mistakes on things we have been doing well all year. They did not execute in the critical spots of the game, and it made a big difference tonight,” Randall said.
On Thursday night action, Clovis West struggled with consistency and sloppy play in their 26-13 loss to Bullard. The score wasn’t indicative of the competitiveness of the game; Clovis West actually led first and tied the game in the third quarter.
Clovis West got the first score of the game with a three-yard touchdown pass from senior quarterback Brad Senneway to junior receiver David Pierro in the first quarter.
Clovis West had its defense in firm control for the first three Bullard drives of the game, but after Senneway fumbled the snap attempting to punt, Bullard was given a short field for the offense to work with.
The Knights took full advantage, scoring in three plays with a 20-yard touchdown pass from junior quarterback Bryce Weiner to sophomore Jayden Davis.
Weiner would have a great game for the Knights, finding open receivers throughout the night due to blown coverage by Clovis West defenders. Overall, Weiner threw for 250 yards and four touchdowns, while throwing a single interception to Clovis West’s David Pierro in the second quarter.
The interception came with the score tied 6-6 and when Bullard got the ball back at its own 20-yard-line, the Clovis West defense could not stop Weiner from orchestrating an eight-play, 80-yard drive culminating in a two-yard touchdown dive by running back Shalom Welch.
In the second half, the Golden Eagles showed fight and put together their first sustained offensive drive since the first quarter. Taking advantage of numerous defensive penalties by Bullard, Senneway got the Golden Eagles inside the red zone before dashing into the end zone to tie the game at 13.
It was all Bullard from there.
Weiner led two second-half scoring drives for Bullard with two big pass plays – a 43-yard touchdown pass to sophomore Daizon Allen in the third quarter and a 27-yard touchdown strike to senior DeAndre Greely in the 4th quarter that effectively sealed a win for the Knights.
Clovis West was impressive at times in this game, when its offense clicked on scoring drives or when its defense stopped Bullard’s passing attack. Yet, both sides of the ball failed to execute in critical moments with the game close.
The defense gave up big plays and the offense never got into a rhythm after either of their scores.
Lack of execution, as Randall said, made the difference in this game for the Golden Eagles.
Clovis West (2-3) will have a bye week next to regroup before they open up league play against Clovis North on October 4. Bullard (3-1) will travel to play Arroyo Grande next Friday night.