The Dalles defense is a force to be reckoned with.
In three games, this unit has allowed two touchdowns and 414 yards with five sacks, two interceptions and seven fumble recoveries.
Friday, in their 36-0 shutout of Mac-Hi, the Riverhawks allowed 1.9 yards per rush, gave up 31 yards passing, blocked two punts, racked up 3.5 sacks and recovered three fumbles, including a 31-yard touchdown return by Glenn Breckterfield at the 10 minute and 58-second mark of the third quarter.
“Defensively, our guys are playing with a chip on their shoulder and playing with some tenacity and they are stepping up to the challenge,” said TD head coach Steve Sugg. “We are getting to the point now where we are starting to challenge them and giving them goals and things to look forward to. Tonight, they did a good job defensively.”
TD posted 15 tackles for loss, Oscar Fernandez and Jordan Lutu each blocked punts, Julian Hernandez had 5.5 tackles and two sacks and Austin Oldfield had a sack.
Breckterfield tallied a team-leading 9.5 tackles, Jacob Schacht totaled seven, J.R. Scott picked up 6.5, Oscar Fernandez ended up with six tackles and Lutu added five tackles, three for a loss.
TD scored twice in the opening period, as senior quarterback Dominique Seufalemua connected with Breckterfield on a 60-yard touchdown.
Less than three minutes later, Breckterfield took a handoff and scampered seven yards for a score, capping a 2-play, 11-yard drive.
With 1:32 remaining in the half, Seufalemua and the Riverhawks went on a nine-play, 65-yard drive.
Seufalemua found an open Dakota Murr on a seven-yard pass to give TD a 19-0 lead at the half.
Breckterfield added his fumble recovery early in the third quarter, and then Lutu, playing his first game at fullback, rumbled for a 13-yard touchdown to swell the Hawk lead to 33-0.
Aldo Mondragon went 3 for 4 on extra points and added a 24-yard field goal with 4:30 left in regulation.
“We got to get more consistent offensively. It is another work in progress,” Sugg said. “My offensive line is not where I want it to be yet. The potential is there and I think the kids see it. The kids know it. But, now that gives us another goal to strive for in the next couple of weeks.”
Seufalemua completed 8 of 12 passes for 152 yards and two touchdowns.
Breckterfield finished with a team-leading three catches for 82 yards, Dakota Murr, in his first game, had three grabs for 36 yards, Fernandez and Mondragon had a catch apiece for a combined 53 yards, Fernandez’s catch going for 28 yards.
Lutu rushed the ball four times for 32 yards and Scott added 25 yards on four totes.
Sugg also mentioned the play of his underclassmen, such as freshman running back Dalles Seufalemua, who had 27 yards rushing. Gabe Helseth completed 4 of 5 passes for 62 yards, and Logan Manciu added 45 yards receiving on four catches.
“My freshman quarterback completed four or five passes, Dalles Seufalemua had a couple of really nice runs, so it makes me feel good to see that level of excitement in our freshmen kids,” Sugg said. “I had some sophomores playing. Seeing the youth coming up through the program and seeing the excitement is a really good feeling. It has been a long time since this program has been 3-0 out of the chute, so it is exciting.”
The Riverhawks (3-0 overall) travels to White Salmon, Wash. for a non-league game next Friday at 7 p.m.
All team stats courtesy of www.sportsstatservice.com.