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No. 5 Hancock Football Dominates Santa Barbara 31-3 in Conference Opener

No. 5 Hancock Football Dominates Santa Barbara 31-3 in Conference Opener

Allan Hancock College running back Isaac Bausley rushed for a career-high 124 yards and scored two touchdowns, Jimmy Kelleher threw two touchdown passes, and the defense kept Santa Barbara City College's potent offense out of the end zone as the Bulldogs opened conference play with a dominant 31-3 win at La Play Stadium on Saturday afternoon. The Bulldogs snapped a four-game losing skid to the Vaqueros to earn their first win over SBCC since 2012. The Bulldogs, who are ranked No. 5 in the Southern California American Division Poll, improved to 4-2 overall and 1-0 in Pacific League standings. The Vaqueros, who are ranked No. 7, fell to 3-3 overall and 0-1 in league.

Hancock took the lead for good on the opening drive of the game as Bausley, a freshman from Nipomo High School, ran it in from two yards out to cap a 16-play, 68-yard drive. The Bulldogs missed the extra point, but took a 6-0 lead. SBCC promptly drove down to the Hancock 20-yard line when Lenny Roundtree, Jr. stepped in front of a Gerald Hickson pass for his second interception of the season. The pick was the first of three turnovers forced by the Hancock defense on the day.

Hancock carried its six-point lead into the second quarter until Santa Barbara kicker Martin Ahlstroem converted a 30-yard field goal to make it a 6-3 game with 8:15 to play in the first half. Hancock answered right back on its next possession as Bausley ran it in from nine yards out for his second score of the half. After a successful two-point conversion, the Bulldogs built a 14-3 lead that they carried into halftime.

The Bulldogs extended their lead on their second possession of the second half. Hancock capped a five-play, 40-yard drive with a 28-yard touchdown pass from Jimmy Kelleher to tight end Dominic Chance, an Atascadero High School graduate. The Bulldogs caught the Vaqueros off guard with the pass after running the ball the first four plays of the drive.

After SBCC's ensuing drive ended with an interception by JD Smith, the Bulldogs added to their lead with a 30-yard field goal by sophomore kicker Jordan Pollard to make it a 24-3 lead. The Righetti High School graduate missed a 41-yard field goal attempt in the first half.

The Hancock defense answered the call again on the Vaqueros' next drive when Osa Omokaro forced a fumble and Dominic King recovered the loose ball. The Bulldogs quickly turned that into seven points as Kelleher connected with Michael Ferraro for a 9-yard touchdown strike to make it a 31-3 lead less than a minute into the fourth quarter.

The Hancock defense limited the SBCC offense, which came in averaging 36 points and 376 yards per game, to just three points and 204 yards of offense, including 121 yards on the ground. The Bulldogs on the other hand rushed for 296 yards, about 95 more than their season average, and ranked up 370 total yards.  Stephen Sings, Mystikal Wilson, Connor Epley, Osa Omokaro and Ben Willkomm provided several big plays on defense for the Bulldogs. Sings led the Bulldogs with 12 total tackles, while Omakaro added 10, including 3.5 for loss.

Bausley, who came into this game with 46 yards and 11 carries, ran the ball 20 times for 124 yards and two scores. Ryheem Skinner compiled 84 yards rushing on 19 carries, while Damon Whitmill, Jr. added 59 carries on 13 carries.

Kelleher finished the day 7-for-14 passing for 74 yards and two touchdowns. Ferraro was the Bulldogs' leading receiver with four catches for 33 yards and one touchdown.

After taking the 57th all-time meeting by 28 points, the Bulldogs took a 32-24-1 edge in a series that dated back to 1956.

The Bulldogs will host Los Angeles Valley on Saturday, October 21, at 2 p.m.  L.A. Valley, the defending conference champion. L.A. Valley opens conference play today against L.A. Pierce at 6 p.m.