The Bakersfield defense also kept Canyons out of the end zone until the fourth quarter as the Renegades improved their record to 9-1 overall and 6-0 in the National Division Northern Conference entering the postseason.
Statistically, the game was relatively even, with Bakersfield holding a slight edge in total yards and Canyon holding an edge in first downs. But the difference in the game was three big plays, all on passes from Kilgore to Randle. The first, a 75-yard touchdown pass midway through the second quarter, gave Bakersfield a 14-3 lead. The second, a 71-yarder with 7 seconds left in the first half, made it 21-3. Then the two combined on a 47-yard pass in the third quarter that set up a 34-yard field goal by Josh Gallington that made it 24-3 and closed out the scoring for the Renegades.
Canyons mounted a rally in the fourth quarter, finally getting into the end zone on Eric Brown’s 21-yard touchdown pass to D.J. Stephens with 13:35 left in the game. Then, after a Bakersfield punt, COC got the ball back again with 12:26 left. An interception/fumble double turnover when Yul Hawkins intercepted a Brown pass and returned it 50 yards before fumbling - David Padilla recovered for the Cougars - set the Cougars back 33 yards, but COC drove to the Bakersfield 23 midway through the fourth quarter. But Stephens dropped a would-be touchdown pass, and a clipping penalty wiped out what would have been a first down completion to Mychal Rivera. On fourth down, C.J. Atkins couldn’t haul in a pass from Brown near the first down marker, essentially ending the Canyons comeback bid.
Bakersfield began the game with an 8-play, 74-yard drive to take a 7-0 lead just 3:50 into the first quarter. Kilgore threw an 11-yard touchdown pass to Rishard Matthews to cap the drive, and Bakersfield never surrendered the lead. Canyons answered with a 17-play, 67-yard drive that ended with a 27-yard field goal by James Rodriguez with 3:52 left in the first quarter to cut the margin to 7-3.
After that, the Bakersfield defense kept Canyons scoreless until the fourth quarter, by which time the Renegades had a 24-3 lead. Canyons finished the first half with four punts and two fumbles lost, and began the second half with three more punts before finally breaking through in the fourth quarter. Hawkins, who had at least a half-dozen bone-jarring hits in addition to his interception, and defensive tackle Tyrone Crawford, who left the game late with an apparent leg injury, were visible presences on defense for the Renegades.
Kilgore completed 10 of 20 passes on the night for 266 yards and 3 touchdowns on the night. Randle had 3 catches for 193 yards, all of which were key in Bakersfield’s final 17 points. Ben Estill led Bakersfield rushes with 80 yards on 19 carries before leaving in the third quarter with an apparent leg injury.
For Canyons, Brown completed 17 of 37 passes for 147 yards and a TD, and also rushed for 104 yards on 19 carries. Stephens led all receivers with 6 catches, good for 75 yards and a TD. Ryan Zirbel had a strong night for the Cougars with 67 yards rushing on 12 carries. Josh Gibbs had a pair of interceptions to lead the defense.
Bakersfield now will attempt to patch up the wounded troops heading into the postseason. The Renegades will host a playoff game next Saturday. Canyons, meanwhile, finishes the regular season 6-4 and must now wait and see if a postseason non-playoff bowl bid materializes.
Bakersfield Renegades 24
College of the Canyons Cougars 9
Saturday, November 14, 2009 - 7 pm - Cougar Stadium - Santa Clarita
B - Matthews 11 yd pass from Kilgore (Gallington kick) 11:10 (7-0)
C - FG Rodriguez 27 yds 3:52 (7-3)
B - Randle 75 yd pass from Kilgore (Gallington kick) 7:53 (14-3)
B - Randle 71 yd pass from Kilgore (Gallington kick) 0:07 (21-3)
B - FG Gallington 34 yds 1:47 (24-3)
C - Stephens 21 yd pass from Brown (kick blocked) 13:35 (24-9)
First Downs: Canyons 21 (11 rush, 8 pass, 2 penalty), Bakersfield 15 (7 rush, 7 pass, 1 penalty)
Rushes-Yds: Canyons 40-218, Bakersfield 40-135
Passing Yds: Canyons 155, Bakersfield 266
Comp-Att-Int: Canyons 18-38-1, Bakersfield 10-20-2
Return Yds: Canyons 106, Bakersfield 142
Sacks-Yds: Canyons 1-7, Bakersfield 1-1
Fumbles-Lost: Canyons 3-2, Bakersfield 1-1
Penalties-Yds: Canyons 11-101, Bakersfield 9-96
Time of Possession: Canyons 31:27, Bakersfield 28:33
Rushing: COC 7-Brown 19-104, 12-Zirbel 12-67, 11-Stephens 3-38, 21-Hale 5-5, 8-Morales 1-4; BC 44-Estill 19-80, 28-Hampton 11-31, 10-Kilgore 3-16, 35-Dean-Johnson 5-12, team 2-(-4)
Passing: COC 7-Brown 17-37-1-147, 1 TD; 8-Morales 1-1-0-8; BC 10-Kilgore 10-20-2-266, 3 TDs
Receiving: COC 11-Stephens 6-75, 81-Rivera 4-40, 5-London 3-15, 1-Atkins 1-11, 24-Bailey 1-10, 22-O’Donnell 1-2, 21-Hale 1-1, 85-Wright 1-1; BC 14-Randle 3-193, 8-Matthews 2-27, 44-Estill 2-25, 5-Van Horne 2-16, 28-Hampton 1-5
Interceptions-Ret Yds: COC 6-Gibbs 2-9; BC 18-Hawkins 1-50
Fumble Rec-Ret Yds: COC 50-Padilla 1-0; BC 20-Webb 1-0, 26-Coronado 1-0
Sacks-Yds: COC 52-Harrington 1-7; BC 92-Crawford 1-1
Punters: COC 96-Behrad 7.38.6 avg; BC 17-Botts 7-34.6 avg
Kick Returns: COC 28-Johnson 3-77, 82-McCrory 1-20; BC 30-Harris 2-40, 8-Matthews 1-18
Punt Returns: COC none; BC 8-Matthews 2-34
Missed FG: none
Notes: Bakersfield entered #5 in South and #10 in nation (JC Grid-Wire) and improves to 9-1 overall, 6-0 in National-North. Canyons entered #11 in South and falls to 6-4 overall, 3-3 in National-North. Morales started at QB for COC but Brown entered in the 1st series and went the rest of the way. 21-Morrow blocked the extra point for BC. Hawkins fumbled at the end of his interception return and Padilla recovered for COC, which got the ball back but lost 33 yards on the play. These teams have met 10 times since COC reinstated its program in 1998 and each team has won 5 of them.