Beaumont‘s well runs dry
Saturday, April 14th
Led by a dominating, unrelenting defense, the San Diego Shockwave scored early and often and coasted to an impressive 46 – 9 victory over the previously unbeaten Beaumont Drillers at Cox Arena on Saturday night.
Played before 2,486 enthusiastic fans, even legendary
Texas oil well blowout expert Red Adair couldn’t cap this one.
The Shockwave’s defense confused and stifled the seemingly non-existent Driller offense through the first three quarters. While Beaumont’s offensive was adequate in last week’s 34 – 32 win against
Atlanta, tonight, they turned the ball over 6 times. When they did hold onto the ball, their output was held to a barely a trickle – the Drillers didn’t complete a pass or record a first down until the 4th quarter. Their only offensive gain in the first half was on a broken play.
Meanwhile, the Shockwave offense, led by first time starter Matt Pound played relatively mistake-free football. They scored on two short Ali Culpepper runs, two Pound TD passes – to WR Deondre Alexander and WR Chris Pittman – and a long FG from reliable K John Matich, taking a commanding 32 – 3 lead into the locker-room at halftime.
The most dramatic play of the evening came on the heels of one of many Driller 1st half turnovers. Taking advantage of the scoring opportunity, Pound connected with Pittman on a 38 yard TD to take a commanding 25 – 3 lead midway through the 2nd quarter. Pittman, who finished with 2 TD catches on the night, caught this one in full stride while slamming, a split second later, into the unyielding dasher board in the back of the endzone.
“I was zoning in on the ball, trying to stay focused and make the catch,” said Pittman of his amazing reception. “I really didn’t see the wall coming. Fortunately, I hung on.”
“That was a big-time catch,” commented winning Coach Bob Bees who, at 2 – 1 in his first season as a head coach has the Shockwave in first place in the NIFL’s Pacific Division. “Pittman’s catch really fired up the crowd and the team. We knew we were on our way.”
The Drillers meanwhile, couldn’t shake the dust off their boots, trying three different QB’s in the first half alone, all with the same result.
Beaumont’s QB’s combined for five first half turnovers. In fact,
Beaumont turned the ball over six times in their first eight possessions.
“Our defensive line was relentless from the beginning, really setting the tone for the entire game,” added Bees. “Everybody did a great job tonight. Our offensive line stepped up and showed what they could do. Our receivers – who dropped 6 or 7 balls last week in
Wyoming – really stepped up and made some great grabs, particularly Chris Pittman’s catch.”
With the game out of reach,
Beaumont starting QB Kirk Dean hit WR Chad Luttrell on a 36 yard fly pattern for a TD at 8:14 of the 4th quarter. The 2 point conversion failed, making the score 39 – 9.
Roman Ybarra came in late in the game to throw the final TD pass for the Shockwave, a 5 yard scoring strike to Pittman.
“I was excited to have the chance to start,” said QB Pound, a local product from
Escondido. “I made a few mistakes in the beginning, but our defense held them scoreless. All I had to do was get the ball to my teammates and let them do the rest.”
Montra Edwards’ defense, which gave up 57 points the week before, shut down
Beaumont. DL Ricky Leungwai started things off at 11:50 of the 1st quarter, by blocking a long field goal attempt into the end zone for a safety, making the score 2 – 0.