Del Sol’s football team turned the ball over on each of its first three possessions Thursday night.
Once the Dragons got going, however, there was no stopping them.
Del Sol scored on its next four possessions and never punted en route to a 48-0 road win over Rancho.
“We settled down and valued the possession of the ball,” Del Sol coach Mike Valenzuela said. “We were just doing stuff that was out of character for us in the first three drives. We had a bad snap, plus three turnovers.
“They settled down and we were able to move the ball and score some points.”
Andre Nevarez, who entered the game as the area’s leading passer, completed 17 of 22 passes for 259 yards and two TDs to lead the Dragons. He spread the ball around, connecting with five receivers as Del Sol looked to get the ball in the hands of its playmakers.
“We definitely hang our hats on putting pressure on defenses with five guys that can score on any play,” Valenzuela said. “We’ve got one of the best receiving corps I’ve ever gotten to be a part of and a tailback that can catch the ball out of the backfield, as well. We expect to stretch defenses vertically and laterally and put up a whole bunch of points.”
Trey Alexander added 105 rushing yards and a pair of scores on 17 carries for the Dragons, who finished with 380 yards of offense and triggered the running clock on a 10-yard fumble return for a score by Kayce Cohen with 7:12 to go in the third quarter.
Alexander scored on a 10-yard run with 14 seconds to go in the first quarter to open the scoring, and added a 3-yard scoring run with 10:15 to play.
Nevarez had a 26-yard scoring pass to Kamani Wilks in the first half, and connected with Markell Turner for a 25-yard TD pass in the fourth quarter.
Wilks also had a 2-yard TD run, and Turner finished with five catches for 103 yards. Maalik Flowers added five catches for 73 yards for the Dragons (3-2), who are ranked No. 4 in Class 3A.
Rancho (1-4) struggled to handle the ball, fumbling nine times and losing four. The Rams finished with 74 rushing yards on 35 carries.
“Our defense is really hanging our hat on stopping the run,” Valenzuela said. “That’s the focus from Sunday night all the way through the final walk through on Thursday, getting lined up and making teams do something else other than run the ball between the tackles against us.”