Bishop Gorman’s status as the top seed from the Southwest League was already secured coming into its regular season finale Friday at Clark.
With everything set, the goal for the No. 1 Gaels was to go into the postseason on a high note.
By scoring on every possession and keeping the Chargers out of the end zone, Bishop Gorman’s football team was successful by all measures. Even tough-to-please head coach Kenny Sanchez had difficulty finding faults in his team’s 52-0 victory.
“We wanted to make sure we finished on offense, and we really wanted to make sure we got a shutout for the last game,” Sanchez said. “We did all that. It was also important to stay healthy and to go into the playoffs with a full head of steam.”
Gorman’s first team, which played only until halftime, was virtually flawless. It took the offense less than a minute to drive 66 yards and put points on the board. Quarterback Micah Bowens scored the first touchdown for the Gaels (7-3, 6-0 Southwest League) on a 1-yard sneak that was set up by a 63-yard run by Amod Cianelli on the previous play.
While Cianelli only played on Gorman’s first two possessions, he netted 97 yards on seven carries. His five consecutive rushes on the Gaels’ second drive set up a 5-yard touchdown by fellow running back Ikaika Ragsdale.
Gorman’s next three scores all came from passes by Bowens, who completed 4 of 6 passes for 66 yards. Blaze Boudreau got one touchdown reception from 8 yards out, and Donovan Smith caught TD passes of 20 and 8 yards.
Smith’s second touchdown, which was on the first play of the second quarter, started the running clock that went for the rest of the game.
“The passing game was good,” Smith said. “Our run game was working too, so we try to throw in those little passes whenever we can. We always set each other up well so we all can make plays. That lets us spread the ball around.”
The Gorman first-string offense squeezed in one more touchdown when Bowens ran it in from the 5-yard line midway through the second quarter.
“Our offense has gotten a lot better since the first part of the season,” Sanchez said. “We’re pretty young with a new quarterback and new receivers. It has taken a little while for those guys to jell. We thought it would happen sooner than later. But, hey, there’s no time like the present.”
Meanwhile, the Gaels’ defense was just as dominant. Clark (1-9, 1-5) had just one first down in the first half.
The Chargers managed to get one big play, a 40-yard rush from Devon Lavender that came on a fake punt in the third quarter. That play made up nearly half of Clark’s 101 yards of total offense.