Hanford came into Friday night’s Mid-Columbia Conference football opener against Pasco with a high-flying offense.
However, it was the defense that propelled the Falcons to a 14-6 victory at Edgar Brown Stadium.
Handord is 3-0, 1-0 in MCC play. Pasco dropped to 0-3, 0-1.
“(Defensive coordinator) Tom DeWitz coached a great game,” Hanford coach Brett Jay said. “The defense played well.”
The Bulldogs drove inside the Hanford 30-yard line seven times, only to come away with six points.
It was the effort of the Pasco defense that kept the Bulldogs in the game.
The first quarter finished scoreless, but each team moved the ball inside the 20-yard line.
Hanford turned the ball over on downs, and Pasco missed a field goal.
The Falcons took the lead late in the second quarter when quarterback Desmond Samples rolled one way and threw back to Elwood Davis for a 3-yard score with under a minute left in the half.
After a turnover, Pasco failed to capitalize on a 4th-and-8 from the 15-yard line, turning the ball over on downs.
The Falcoms upped the lead to 14-0 when Kedrick Skinner took a short pass and rambled through the Pasco defense for a 44-yard score.
After a pair of unnecessary roughness penalties and a 23-yard run by Kaleb Ash, Pasco had the ball first-and-goal at the Hanford 7-yard line.
Three plays later, Ash bolted in from the 3 on the first play of the fourth quarter.
The two teams traded field position in the fourth quarter.
However, with 2:40 remaining in the game, Pasco had its chance.
The Bulldogs moved from their own 31 to the Hanford 7, but quarterback Kolby Killoy barely missed connecting with 6-foot-6 Sebastian Gutierrez with two jump-ball passes as the game ended.
Samples connected on 15 of 33 passes for 191 yards.
Davis had 82 carries on 13 rushes.
Davis also had five catches for 51 yards.
Ash finished with 152 yards on 26 carries for the Bulldogs.
Gutierrez had four catches for 94 yards for Pasco.
H — Elwood Davis 3 pass from Desmond Samples (Woody Page kick)
H — Kedrick Skinner 44 pass from Samples (Page kick)
P — Kaleb Ash 3 run (kick failed)
RUSHING — H, Davis 13-82, Samples 15-19, Joe Gauthier 1-6, Josh Richardson 1-1. P, Ash 26-152, Kolby Killoy 7-36, Tayden Jenkins 3-15, Deondre Hendrix 5-12, Cole Kelley 3-9, Kynen Tate 1-4.
PASSING — H, Samples 15-33-1-191, Joshua Fonner 1-10-25. P, Killoy 10-27-2-147, Tate 0-1-1-0.
RECEIVING — H, Kedrick Skinner 2-57, Davis 5-51, Kevin Skinner 3-46, Gauthier 3-31, Gavin Slack 3-31. P, Sebastian Gutierrez 4-94, Kelley 1-17, Izmael Mercado 2-17, Tate 1-12, Chris English 1-7, Hendrix 1-0.