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Photo by James Quigg
Barstow's Tracy Venable (2) passes to James Noble during Friday's CIF-SS game at Oak Hills High School.

Bulldogs end Aztecs' season

OAK HILLS • The Oak Hills football program has had quite a bit of success in its early years, but one thing has been missing: a playoff victory as a member of the Eastern Division.


Thanks to a host of long passes, their normal stout defense and a big third quarter, the Bulldogs no longer have that hole on their resume after routing Barstow, 49-14, in the first round of the CIF-Southern Section Eastern Division playoffs on a chilly Friday evening.


“It was a good win for us,” Oak Hills head coach Robert Kistner said. “We came out and we thought we could get some long passes on them and we did. The defense stepped up and got us some turnovers and the offense did a couple of one-play drives and it kind of got away from them.”


Quarterback Nolan Brammer, a sophomore who became the starter after David Richardson broke his left leg during Week 2, was in total command from the start and torched the Barstow secondary time and time again. He completed 12 of 16 passes for 264 yards and two touchdowns before taking a seat in the fourth quarter.


Senior Tyrone Gilmer, a track star playing his first year of varsity football, was Brammer’s favorite target and blew by Barstow defenders like they were playing in slow motion. Each of the senior’s five catches went for at least 29 yards, and he finished with 161 receiving yards and two touchdowns.


“We saw it on film that they were going to go man-to-man coverage and we feel pretty good about Tyrone trying to match up with anybody in man to man,” Kistner said.


Gilmer admitted that he was licking his chops once he saw the way Barstow (7-4) was going to defend him.


“I was a happy. I got a little too happy, actually,” he said. “I got a little trigger happy, told the coach a couple times to throw me the ball more. I knew I could beat them to the outside.”


The Oak Hills offense had eight plays of at least 29 yards and four other plays of more than 15 yards. The Bulldogs (10-1) led start to finish and held a 21-7 advantage at halftime before breaking the game open with 14 points in the first 1 minutes, 13 seconds of the second half.


De’Zhontaey Fletcher bolted through the middle for a 66-yard touchdown run on the first play of the third quarter, and after the defense recovered an Aztecs fumble two plays later, Brammer hit Gilmer in stride on a 30-yard touchdown strike down the left sideline to turn it into a rout.


Fletcher finished with 110 rushing yards on nine carries and found the end zone twice. Brett Kokesh also ran for a pair of touchdowns.


Meanwhile, the Oak Hills defense was able to contain Barstow running back James Noble, who ran for 2,198 yards and 21 touchdowns during the regular season while averaging 7.4 yards per carry.


Noble carried the ball 26 times for 136 yards and a touchdown, but 123 of those yards came after the Bulldogs already held a 42-7 lead. He was held to only 13 yards on his first 12 carries while Oak Hills jumped out front.


The Bulldogs forced a pair of turnovers and sacked Aztecs quarterback Tracy Venable three times.


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