Sunnyside scored 20 unanswered points to open Friday night’s contest against Sierra Vista Buena and rode the hot start to a 41-24 win.
The Blue Devils were sparked by a career-high three touchdowns from wide receiver/cornerback Armando Guzman. The senior caught two TDs from quarterback Deion Conde and ran another one back on a pick-six.
Conde, the Blue Devils’ junior QB, tossed a season-high four touchdowns as the team improved to 3-1 on the year with its third straight win.
“Deion is such a great anticipatory thrower, that stuff is hard to teach,” Sunnyside coach Glenn Posey said. “He made some throws tonight that were on the money.”
It appeared the Blue Devils were going to ran away with the win right out of the gate as they opened up a 20-0 lead in the first quarter.
Guzman returned the opening kick deep into Buena territory and moments later caught a 29-yard score to make it 6-0.
The lead was extended soon after on a 7-yard TD throw from Conde to receiver Samario Garcia followed by a 74-yard run to the end zone by senior running back Brock McDaniel.
However, the Blue Devil’s play got sloppy in the second quarter, allowing a touchdown right before half then fumbling the ensuing kickoff which Buena converted into a field goal to make it 20-10 going into the locker room.
“The first half was great football for us outside of those 20 seconds,” Posey said.
Buena’s offense struggled to move the ball for much of the night as the Colts rotated snaps at quarterback between freshman Nash Moore and senior Jalen Everette.
To get a spark, Buena (1-2) dialed up a trick play in the second quarter by calling a wide receiver pass. Wideout Keyon Taylor caught the ball behind the line of scrimmage, waited for the defense to close in, then fired a 26-yard pass to tight end William Stemler.
Despite the positive development for Buena, the team ran into more trouble to start the third quarter as Guzman intercepted a third down pass and returned it for a 20-yard score less than two minutes in.
“I had some bad plays on defense earlier in the game so I just wanted to make up for it,” Guzman said.
The Sunnyside two-way player later added his third TD of the night when Conde found him open down the sideline for a 20-yard pitch and coach. That boosted the team’s lead to 34-17 heading into the fourth quarter.
On the night, Conde completed 13 of 18 passes for 173 yards while Guzman hauled in four catches for 54 yards.
“Armando’s is very athletic and very quick,” Conde said. “I love him for his moves out there.”
Conde said he felt confident in the team’s offense which was coming off a 35-7 win over Paradise Valley. The game plan was just to stay consistent each drive.
“We just kept out composure throughout the game and made sure we stayed calm,” Conde said.
The Sunnyside defense got its second interception of the night late in the fourth quarter and Conde put the icing on cake with his fourth touchdown throw to increase the lead to 41-24 with 4:24 to play.
Contact sports producer Alec White at 573-4161 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
On Twitter: @alecwhite_UA