Eagles outmuscle No. 10 Bend

HOOD RIVER -- Jacobe Krizman left little doubt Friday why he is the state's top rusher, leading Hood River Valley to a 56-39 win over Bend at Henderson Stadium.

The senior wing back raised his five-game total to 1,255 yards with a 258-yard, four touchdown performance against a Lava Bears' defense that was ranked second in the Intermountain Conference.

Krizman also threw two touchdown passes to Chris Searles and blocked an extra point, helping the Eagles raise their IMC record to 2-1 (4-1 overall). Bend dropped its first game of the season and stands at 2-1 (4-1).

"We wanted to come out and show that we're just as good, if not better, than the No. 10 team in the state," said Searles, who rushed for 97 yards on 12 carries. "The rankings are definitely a motivator for us, and tonight we proved that we belong."

But it wasn't just the offense that carried the Eagles to victory Friday. The defense, ranked sixth in the IMC, also stepped up its game and made two key fourth-down stops in the fourth quarter.

"I would have to give this one to our pass defense," a humble Krizman said after the game. "They played their hearts out and proved that we're not all about offense."

While the Eagles secondary did give up 318 yards through the air to Dan Haley and the Lava Bears' receivers, it responded in the red zone, preventing one touchdown and two two-point tries inside the 20-yard line.

Haley and his primary targets, Travis Vance and Justin Fleming, were able to exploit the small, inexperienced HRV secondary throughout both halves with their spread offensive sets.

Fleming caught seven passes for 136 yards and two TD's, while Vance snared three passes for 108 yards and a score. Tight end Eric Steimer also caught a TD pass from Haley to cap a five-catch performance.

Featured tailback Matt Sieverson had an off night, rushing for just 15 yards (unofficial) against a stingy HRV run defense that had allowed the second fewest yards in the IMC before Friday's contest (535). Haley led the Lava Bears' rushing attack with 41 yards and two touchdowns.

Haley's four-yard scamper in the first quarter capped a strong opening drive for the Lava Bears, while his 19-yard sweep left side put them up 14-7 early in the second quarter. HRV tied the game at 6:09 on a 12-yard TD pass from Jarrod Fogle to Dominic Buttaccio before Fleming caught a 57-yard bomb to put Bend back on top 21-14.

But Krizman reeled off a 65-yard run just before halftime to tie the game. HRV then went on a 14-0 tear to start the second half, with Nigel Bond scoring from four yards out, and Krizman from three yards.

Steimer caught a two-yard TD pass before the end of the third to narrow the deficit to eight (35-27), but Krizman took over in the fourth with TD runs of 10 and 35 yards before throwing the game-clinching 13-yard pass to Searles with 3:05 left.

HRV travels to Redmond next Friday, while Bend hosts first-place Hermiston.

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