Magnolia doesn't like to throw the football a lot. Bolsa Grande lives or dies by the pass.
But Thursday night at Western High, Magnolia used the pass to upend the Matadors, 26-14, in a nonleague game in front of about 300.
Magnolia quarterback Anthony Zaragosa used passes of 38 and 47 yards to keep key scoring drives alive for the Sentinels (2-0). Bolsa Grande quarterback Doug Baughman completed 14 of 31 passes for 195 yards and two touchdowns and Sam Baeder caught nine passes for 129 yards, But it was Zaragosa, calling most of his own plays, and running back Will Speer, who were the difference. Zaragosa accounted for 144 yards, and Speer, who carried 21 times, rushed for 134 yards, two scores and a two-point conversion.
"He calls about 98% of his plays," Magnolia Coach Bill Friedrich said of Zaragosa. "We just give him some guidelines and he does the rest."
Magnolia entered the season with only 11 wins in the last seven years and struggled early in what Coach Bill Friedrich called "an ugly win." It wasn't until Speer bounced off tackle on a three-yard run with 11 minutes 48 seconds to play that Magnolia took its first lead, 20-14.
But about six minutes later, after a good defensive stop by the Sentinel front line, reserve Gucci Auletta capped the scoring for Magnolia with a 15-yard run up the middle with 5:37 left to play in the game.
Baughman and Baeder hooked up for the first Bolsa Grande score on the Matadors' opening possession. Baughman passed 45 yards to his favorite target on a third down and three from the Magnolia 49. That got Bolsa Grande to the Sentinel four-yard line and two plays later, after losing a couple of yards on a fumbled snap, Baughman passed six yards to Baeder for a touchdown. The extra point failed.
Magnolia retaliated, marching 80 yards on 11 plays with Speer rushing six yards for a touchdown to cap the drive.
Baughman completed an eight-yard pass to Baeder for a touchdown with 4:13 left in the first half. Then Baughman passed for a two-point conversion to Frank Angel.
Magnolia tied the score two minutes later when Speer capped a five-play, 73-yard drive with a six-yard run.