HESPERIA — Hesperia dominated the game on the ground from start to finish Friday night and pounded Lakeview, 34-7, for an impressive opening victory.
The Panthers already led by three touchdowns when they got the ball to start the third quarter, but it was that drive that saw the team truly make its mark on the game. Hesperia held the ball for 20 plays and almost the entire third quarter before punching it in for a score in the final minute of the frame, cementing the victory.
"We came out in the second half and wanted to be physical and take some time off the clock and finish it off with a touchdown and we did that," Hesperia coach Doug Bolles said. "I was very pleased with our week of practice leading up to this game. We were focused and locked in. We definitely have things to work on, but I'm really proud of my guys for sticking to the game plan."
All 460 of the Panthers' offensive yards were on the ground, led by two 100-plus yard rushers. Mack Baird went for 179 yards and two scores on only 10 carries, and Johnny Majersky, the starting quarterback, carried 15 times for another 113 yards and a touchdown. Brandon Quinn and Kile Pomeroy also scored in the win.
On defense, Hesperia allowed only 107 offensive yards. Mason Taylor had nine tackles and an interception, and Quinn chipped in eight takedowns and a pair of sacks. Armando Escobedo and Baird added an interception each.
The Panthers will get a bigger test next Friday when they host a powerful Kent City squad.
"Starting out 1-0 is sweet for sure, but we won't celebrate long, because we have more things we want to accomplish," Bolles said.