BENTON CITY — Just when you thought the Royal defense couldn’t play any more dominant, the Knights turn in a defensive effort like Friday night’s 55-0 victory over Kiona-Benton.
The offense put up all 55 points in the first half, rolling along to eight touchdowns and 473 total yards, so it’s not like they didn’t make a contribution.
But the defense is fitting of a program with 48 consecutive victories, dating back to the 2016 state quarterfinals, and just the seventh program in all Washington state classifications to win three straight state championships.
The Knights (7-0, 4-0 SCAC East) held Kiona-Benton to just 25 total yards on 34 plays, including minus-16 yards rushing. They went into the game allowing just four points a game through the first six games. Friday night was their third consecutive shutout, fifth in the past six games. They are now allowing just 3.4 points a game.
Pick a statistic and the Knights were impressive. They recovered three fumbles and intercepted Bears (3-4, 2-2) quarterback Tyler Fischer three times. Tyler Allred, Caleb Christensen and Angel Farias all had an interception apiece. Royal allowed no third-down conversions and finished with seven tackles for a loss. Even after leading 55-0 at the intermission, the reserves struck with the same dominant force in the second half.
On offense, Royal was unstoppable. In fact, they didn’t punt the entire night. Tucker Janett led the team in rushing with 77 yards on eight carries and was good for a 24-yarder. Alonso Hernandez was good for 64 yards and two touchdowns and Lorenzo Myrick added 41 to the 210 team rushing yards.
It doesn’t take the Knights long to crank up the scoring force and they lit up the Bears for 35 first-quarter points. Quarterback Sawyer Jenks rumbled in from 12 yards out to start things off. Then it was Hernandez from 14. Jenks found Gage Christensen on a 35-yard scoring strike. Myrick went the distance from 41 yards out and Hernandez added his second touchdown of the quarter to wrap up the first 12 minutes, and in the blink of an eye it was all over.
Jenks completed 8-of-11 for 162 yards and two touchdowns. Caleb Christensen completed 7-of-11 for 101 yards and a touchdown. On the receiving end, Farias caught four balls for 98 yards. Tyler Allred caught three passes for 41 yards and Gage Christensen finished up with 37 yards on two receptions, including the 35-yard touchdown.
Royal 35 20 0 0 - 55
Ki-Be 0 0 0 0 - 0
R - Sawyer Jenks 12 run (Osvaldo Guerrero kick)
R- Alonso Hernández 14 run (Guerrero kick)
R- Gage Christensen 35 pass from Jenks (Guerrero kick)
R - Lorenzo Myrick 41 run (Guerrero kick)
R - Hernández 10 run (Guerrero kick)
R - Angel Farias 13 pass from Jenks (kick no good)
R - Tucker Janett 13 pass from Caleb Christensen (Guerrero kick)
R - Janett 15 run (Guerrero kick)