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Big Bear football too much for Patriot in quarterfinal game

By in Press Enterprise on November 19, 2017

By Pete Marshall

BIG BEAR LAKE >> Big Bear senior running back Paul Hoag had no expectations that Saturday afternoon’s CIF-SS quarterfinal game would be a blowout.

“I thought it was going to be a close game,” Hoag said. “I was nervous when we found out it (the opponent) was going to be Patriot.”

But a near-flawless game by Big Bear, coupled with three Patriot turnovers resulted in exactly that – a blowout.

Big Bear scored a touchdown on all six possessions in a game that played with a running clock in the fourth quarter for a 42-14 victory over Riverside Patriot in a Division 12 game at Big Bear Middle School.

Third-seeded Big Bear (11-1) advanced to the semifinals, where the Bears will host second-seeded Santa Ana (11-1) next weekend.

In the second year of the competitive equity playoff format, Big Bear coach Dave Griffiths changed his approach to his roster with the possibility of playing larger schools, such as Patriot in the playoffs.

“We’ve take the philosophy of taking a big-school mentality. We only have a three guys who play a lot both ways,” Griffiths said. “Everyone has a position on offense and defense. But we’ve got better depth. I think that’s helped.”

It was a frustrating end to the season for Patriot and coach Chris Fowler. Only a week ago Patriot (8-4) got the first playoff win in the 11-year history of the program.

“We moved the ball pretty well,” Fowler said. “But we kept shooting ourselves in the foot.”
Patriot actually failed to score on any of its first four possessions, despite driving into Bears territory each time.

The first drive resulted in a Patriot punt from the Bears 32, the second ended on downs at the 10 after John Ober threw incomplete in the end zone on fourth down.

Big Bear, meanwhile, had 80- and 72-yard touchdown drives, capped […]    

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