over Valley Lutheran — and Friday night was more of the same.
Antelope’s stout defense held Scottsdale Prep (4-3, 1-2) to just 148 yards of total offense, while the Rams’ run-heavy attack totaled 365 of offense (297 rushing, 68 passing).
Four different Antelope ball carriers totaled at least 50 yards on the ground, most notably senior Dustyn Ricker (8 car., 97 yards) and junior Sam Martinez (13 car., 95 yards, TD). Sophomore William Whitley (5 car., 57 yards, TD) and Isaac Filero (4 car., 53 yards, TD) were the other two.
“Just to get our ground game going,” Mauldin said of the offensive game plan. “I really liked the way our offensive coordinator, if Dustyn had a long run he’d get Isaac in and vice versa.”
Filero also scored on a punt return.
“He really stood out tonight just all over the field,” Mauldin said of Filero.
Sophomore quarterback Trey Hohlbein completed 6 of 14 passes for 68 yards and one touchdown, an 11-yarder to junior receiver Dylan Thomas (2 rec., 32 yards, TD).
“For a school with a little over 200 (students), we have 4-5 weapons that we can go to offensively,” Mauldin said. “And a school our size, a lot of schools are lucky if they have just one or two. So I feel very grateful in that respect.”
But Mauldin is most impressed with Antelope’s defense.
Scottsdale Prep gained more than 20 yards on just two of nine offensive possessions, and converted just 4 of 12 third downs. Outside of Spartans running back Thomas Anctil (25 car., 98 yards), Scottsdale Prep had little offensive success anywhere — quarterback Frias completed just 6 of 15 passes and was intercepted once, by Whitley in the second quarter.
“It’s our speed, really,” Whitley said of the Rams’ defense. “We’ve gotten a lot faster since last year, and we’ve gotten better at hitting harder. It’s mainly our speed, though.”
With Antelope up 21-0 at the half, the only real question in the second half was whether or not the Rams would be able to post yet another shutout.
When the shutout streak ended at 15 quarters thanks to Scottsdale Prep’s touchdown with 8:42 to go in the game, there was a brief sense of deflation on the Rams’ sideline.
But that disappointment disappeared quickly.
“It was a little down (after the touchdown),” Mauldin said, “but three years ago we would have taken anything we could get.”
Indeed, the Antelope program has come a long way.