Yucaipa Thunderbirds capitalize on speed to rout Redlands
By Obrey Brown
REDLANDS >> Speed kills, as was evident in Yucaipa’s 48-21 victory over Redlands in the Terriers’ homecoming game on Friday night.
The Thunderbirds built a 20-0 lead on speed-related plays that went beyond quarterback Keo McChesney’s 182-yards passing and 60 yards rushing on six carries.
Ethan Abreau, part of Yucaipa’s state 4-by-100 track relay team last spring, opened the game with a 48-yard kickoff return.
By the time Cameron Beard booted a 22-yard field goal for a 10-0 lead, the T-Birds (6-0, 3-0) were just warming up.
Safety Matt Best, who had two interceptions that set up a pair of Yucaipa touchdowns, stopped Redlands’ Jalen Batts on the Terriers’ opening series.
Vincent Flores and Andres Vazquez (2 sacks) made stops on Redlands’ other two snaps, forcing a Terrier punt. A 66-yard drive in nine plays was capped when McChesney found Adam Vazquez from 4 yards out.
On Yucaipa’s subsequent kickoff, Griffin Oakley stopped Terrier returner Jakobie Jones at the 10.
“We react quick,” Best said, “and we’ve got the discipline to go along with that. They didn’t do anything surprising out there tonight.”
Besides speed, Best said Yucaipa adds quickness and endurance to the package.
“We’re dangerous,” he said, “because we cooperate with each other. We’ve built a good chemistry. This is the fastest team we’ve ever had at Yucaipa High School. Speed’s not our only weapon.”
By the time Redlands QB Chris Aguilar (17 completions, 234 yards) warmed up, the T-Birds had a 27-7 halftime lead, 41-14 after three quarters.
Best’s first interception, on the T-Birds’ 2-yard-line, was returned 33 yards. It set Yucaipa on its 35. Abreau took McChesney’s handoff on a sweep left, cutting upfield for a 65-yard TD run.
Redlands answered with a 3-yard run by Christian Diaz.
After Alejando Guerrero recovered the Terriers’ kick at midfield, McChesney struck quickly — 13-yard pass to Jacob Barriga and a 36-yard […]