ROYAL — Anybody still wondering if the three-time 1A state defending state champion Royal Knights are ready for the playoffs can quit wondering.
Friday night’s SCAC East game at David Nielsen Stadium should strike fear in anyone facing the team that’s rolling along on the third longest winning streak in the country. The Knights (8-0, 5-0 SCAC East) completely dismantled River View 69-0 with 42 points coming in the first quarter.
On special teams, place kicker Osvaldo Guerrero has scored more points than the previous eight opponents combined (62). Friday he was good for nine point-after kicks and field goals from 26 and 30 yards out. But the punt team proved it was a special unit as well. Angel Farias took four punt returns to the house last season as a junior. He finally broke loose for a 58-yard score off the return in his final regular-season home game at David Nielsen Stadium.
The Royal defense has pitched six shutouts in eight games, including the last four where the Knights have outscored their opponents 146-0. The numbers speak for themselves on the defensive side where they are allowing just 2.12 points a game. Now the Knights are starting to score with that unit.
Lorenzo Myrick stepped in front of Tre Sokota’s pass and returned it 25 yards for the pick six to make it a 56-point lead in the second quarter. Owen Ellis ball-hawked his way to a 27-yard interception and return to the house on River View’s following possession.
If that’s not scary enough with Halloween still a couple of weeks out, the Royal offense, the one that’s averaging 54.62 points a game, had to muscle its way to 35 of the Knights 42 first quarter points. Sawyer Jenks completed 6-of-7 passes for 116 yards and three touchdowns. Gage Christensen completed all four passes attempted for 35 yards.
Royal had 346 in total yards, spreading it around with 162 passing and 184 on the ground. Uriel Garcia led the rushers with five rushes for 50 yards. Tucker Janett finished with 43 yards on six carries and Alonso Hernandez scored two touchdowns, rushing for 31 yards on six attempts. He also scored on a pass play. Myrick also had a rushing touchdown to go with his pick six.
In addition to the defensive scores, there were a few more amazing statistics. The Knights held the Panthers (3-5, 1-4) to just 33 total yards, 12 through the air. The Panthers were just 1-of-9 in third down efficiency and turned the ball over six times (four fumbles, two interceptions).
Royal, which extended the winning streak to 49 consecutive, wraps up the regular season at College Place.
River View 0 0 0 0 - 0
Royal 42 24 3 0 - 69
R - Lorenzo Myrick 25 run (Osvaldo Guerrero kick)
R - Gage Christensen 12 pass from Sawyer Jenks (Guerrero kick)
R - Alonso Hernandez 1 run (Guerrero kick)
R - Hernández 1 run (Guerrero kick)
R - Angel Farias punt return (Guerrero kick)
R - Owen Ellis 1 pass Jenks (Guerrero kick)
R - Hernandez 34 pass from Jenks (Guerrero kick)
R - Lorenzo Myrick 25 pass interception (Guerrero kick)
R - Owen Ellis 27 pass interception (Guerrero kick)
R - Guerrero 26 field goal
R - Guerrero 30 field goal