Casa Grande had too many offensive weapons for visiting Maria Carillo Friday as the Gauchos kept a perfect record 3-0) in the North Bay League with a convincing 35-10 win.
The Gauchos scored in their first four ball possessions and rolled up 281 yards in the first half to take any mystery out of the outcome of this battle between the two NBL contenders. Maria Carillo came into the contest with a three game-winning streak, but the Pumas had no defensive answers.
Casa quarterback JaJuan Lawson threw for two touchdowns and ran 46 yards for another to lead the way in the early going. Lawson threw to a wide open Corey Llorence for a 45-yard touchdown to open the scoring in the first two minutes of the game.
In the second period, the Gauchos finished a 65-yard drive with a Lawson pass to Cole Boggs for a touchdown play covering 21 yards.
Most of the heavy lifting came from burly running back Elijah Qualls, who established the Casa rushing game early by carving out big chucks of yardage behind good blocking up front. Qualls ran for a 12-yard touchdown on the third Gaucho series of the first period.
"Our plan was to get our ground game running early, and our kids executed one of their best games of the year," said Gaucho head coach Trent Herzog. "This was a good team we beat tonight."
Casa took a 28-7 lead at halftime, and added a final tally on a drive of 68 yards in the third period. Lawson ran for a 9-yard touchdown to put the game completely out of reach.
The only touchdown for Maria Carrillo came on a 72-yard breakaway by senior Julian Gonzalez in the first quarter.
Anthony Wirz booted a 30-yard field goal for the Pumas in the third quarter.
Sophomore running back Alex Netherda showed promise for the Pumas by consistently grinding out hard-earned yards throughout the game.