Newbury Park High discovered Friday night that two guns are better than one in a 38-27 nonleague win over Buena at Ventura High.
Led by the offensive arsenal that is quarterback Keith Smith and receiver Leodes Van Buren, the Panthers (2-1) rolled up a 30-7 first-half lead.
Buena threatened with two touchdowns by George Keiaho in the third quarter before Smith (16 of 26, 250 yards) launched a 47-yard scoring pass to Van Buren. The junior finished with five catches for 154 yards and two touchdowns.
“It was all our linemen,” Van Buren said. “They gave Keith the time he needed to throw.”
Newbury Park’s defense and special teams also played a major role, forcing the Bulldogs (2-1) into five turnovers and holding Keiaho--the area’s leading rusher--to 100 yards in 25 carries.
Relying heavily on a ball-control pass attack, Smith marched the Panthers to four first-half scores, including a 14-play, 86-yard drive on their opening possession. Richard Adams slammed over from the one and Smith hit Van Buren with a two-point pass to make it 8-0.
After the teams traded touchdowns, Newbury Park took the ball 64 yards in 11 plays, scoring on a one-yard run by Smith to take a 22-7 lead.
Newbury Park’s Jon Berardinelli recovered the ensuing onside kick at the Bulldog 49. A diving catch by Van Buren for 44 yards and a five-yard reception on consecutive plays gave the Panthers another touchdown. Smith found Jason Toohey for a two-point pass and a 30-7 halftime lead.