Saturday, October 4, 2008

SB's Uribe breaks county passing record, leads Dons to 51-21 win


Santa Barbara quarterback John Uribe turned the sky over Peabody Stadium into his own personal fireworks show last night, throwing seven touchdown passes while racking up 584 passing yards, a new county record.
It didn’t matter where or when, Uribe found his receivers — and usually he found them deep — throwing multiple passes for more than 50 yards en route to his historic performance and the Dons’ dominating 51-21 victory over San Luis Obispo.

For Uribe, it was just another night on the football field, where he knew his team needed to get into the win column after starting the season 0-3.
And after all he did, his arm wasn’t even sore.
“I didn’t throw the ball nearly as much as I have,” Uribe said of the last few games. “Everybody caught the ball well and everything came together. We just wanted to put on a show for everybody and that’s what we did.”
That they did.
Uribe completed 29 of 34 passes with a nonchalant accuracy that seemed routine.
His targets were always sprinting down field, looking over their shoulders for the bullet to find their hands.
And it almost always did.
In the first quarter alone, Uribe threw four touchdown passes and racked up more than 200 passing yards.
He finished the first half with 362 yards and five touchdowns passes. He racked up two more scores in the second half and added another 222 yards to his resume.
Santa Barbara Head Coach Will Gonzales called Uribe a “spectacular player.”
“John is one of the most accurate high school passers,” he said.
Uribe’s 584 yards blew away the former record of 436 set by former Santa Barbara quarterback Dustin Spencer.
Gonzales said it was only a matter of time before his team exploded with offensive power that he said has been boiling to the surface over the last three weeks.
“I think you had three weeks of frustration built up there and we let it out tonight,” he said. “We were playing like we knew we could and that was the key.”
The Dons wasted little time putting points on the board. Uribe completed five passes during a seven-play drive that ended with a 3-yard touchdown pass to Kyle Leonard, the fist of three scores on the night for senior wide receiver.
After forcing San Luis Obispo to punt, the Dons took over on their own 27-yard line and marched down the field behind Uribe, who completed five passes, one of which was a 30-yard completion to Roberto Nelson, who fumbled the ball. As the ball rolled toward the end zone, Dons wide receiver Freddy Maldonado recovered and to racked up an additional 15 yards, which put the Dons at the San Luis Obispo 5-yard line.
On the next play, Uribe hit Leonard for the second score of the night.
The homecoming crowd got a scare during this possession, however, when Santa Barbara tight end and backup quarterback Bryson Lloyd went down with a sprained ankle.
Nelson’s bobble was the first of several breaks that went Santa Barbara’s way.
The Tigers turned the ball over on the next play and the Dons took over at their own 40-yard line.
Uribe made them pay, launching a 60-yard touchdown pass to Freddy Maldonado on the first play.
Things kept going the Dons’ way when San Luis Obispo blocked the point after attempt, but Uribe picked up the ball and fired a pass under pressure to Ralph Padilla for a two-point conversion.
The Dons got the ball back with 3:09 remaining in the first quarter, and after Uribe connected with Nelson for a 43-yard pass, he found Andrew Mendoza for a 21-yard touchdown pass that gave Santa Barbara a 29-0 lead.
The Dons took over on downs with 40 seconds remaining in the quarter, and after completions of 21, 13 and 18 yards, Uribe found Maldonado for a two-yard touchdown pass.
The Tigers scored their only points of the first half with 5:54 remaining on a 22-yard run by Nate Nunno, who finished the night with 158 yards.
The Dons kept the habit of scoring going in the second half when Uribe went to the air again to find Nelson for a 77-yard first down. On the next play, Uribe connected with Mendoza in the end zone for a third time.
Uribe kept his magic arm moving on the extra point attempt, when after he lost control of the snap, he popped up and threw to Padilla for another two-point conversion and a 44-7 lead.
The Dons did little scoring from this point on, but Uribe continued collecting yards, throwing for 30 and 15-yard receptions during one series before punting.
With 9:13 remaining in the game, San Luis Obispo scored again on a 3-yard touchdown run by Nunno.
Uribe threw his only pick of the night on the Dons’ next series, and San Luis Obispo quarterback David Schultz took a page from the Santa Barbara playbook and completed 11, 18 and 19-yard passes before connecting with Justin Goodman for a 7-yard touchdown.
But Uribe and the Dons weren’t done.
With just under five minutes remaining, The Dons marched down the field. Uribe completed two short passes before launching a 50-yard rocket to Maldonando, setting up a 16-yard touchdown pass to Nelson and the final score of the night.
Only that one was called back because of illegal use of hands on the Dons. So the Dons ran the same play, and as if looking at instant replay, Uribe found Nelson in the same spot to make it final.
“Our strength is throwing the ball and we’re going to throw it,” Gonzales said, adding that he doesn’t mind it if other teams don’t appreciate the high scoring.
“[We’re] stuck on the choke,” he said. “It’s difficult to throttle that thing down.”

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