BANGS — The Richland Spring Coyotes are now the Six-Man Division I Region III Bi-District champions after a 54-8 victory over the Gustine Tigers Friday at Dragon Memorial Stadium.
The Coyotes (10-1), led by spread back Haustin Burkhart’s four touchdowns, outmatched the Tigers (8-3) on both sides of the ball.
Defensively, the Coyotes forced a quick three-and-out to start the game, followed by a quick score when Haustin Burkhart found Stephen Fowler on a 20-yard catch and run.
The Tigers, looking to answer the quick and oft-scoring Coyote offense, attempted some trickery in the backfield on their first three possessions, but were unsuccessful. Gustine gained their initial first down of the game with only a couple of minutes left in the opening quarter. Shortly after making their way into Richland Springs territory for the first time in the game, a pass by Gustine’s Kenneth Smith was intercepted by Fowler. On the next play, David Veitch ran up the middle for a seven yard touchdown.
As the clock wound down in the first quarter, the Coyotes made their first mistake of the game, fumbling a punt, which was recovered by the Tigers. The Richland Springs defense allowed no positive yardage on the ensuing drive, and the Coyotes found the end zone again after recovering a blocked punt on the Gustine 6.
Near the end of the game, which came on the “mercy” rule, Gustine put its only points of the night on the scoreboard when Smith completed a 70-yard pass to Hayden Hicks.
The Coyotes, with 54 points, finished just one point shy of their season average point total.
Richland Springs will face Saint Jo (6-3) next week.
1 2 3 4
Richland Springs 24 30 NA NA
Gustine 0 8 NA NA
First downs - 8
Total yards - 223
Rushes-yards - 11-135
Passing yards - 88
C-A-I - 4-5-0
Fumbles-lost - 1-0
Penalties-yards - 3-48
First downs- 4
Total yards - 157
Rushes-yards - 4-30
Passing yards - 127
C-A-I - 8-16-2
Fumbles-lost - 1-1
Penalties-yards - 2-19
Rushing — Richland Springs: Haustin Burkhart (8-109) Gustine: Kenneth Smith (1-32)
Passing — Richland Springs: Burkhart (4-5-88) Gustine: Anthony Johnson (8-16-127)
Receiving — Richland Springs: Denim Reeves (1-45),Stephen Fowler (1-19) Gustine: Hayden Hicks (108 yards), Daniel Escamilla (21 yards)
Richland Springs: Fowler, 20 pass from Burkhart,7:59, 1st
Richland Springs: Burkhart, 16 run, 5:42, 1st
Richland Springs: David Veitch, 7 run, 3:21, 1st
Richland Springs: Burkhart, 14 run, 7:36, 2nd
Richland Springs: Reeves, 45 pass from Burkhart, 5:54, 2nd
Richland Springs: Burkhart, 24 run, 5:15, 2nd
Richland Springs: Burkhart, 51 run, PAT blocked, 1:41, 2nd
Gustine: Hayden Hicks, 70 pass from Anthony Johnson