In Friday night’s battle between the last two undefeated football teams, the Father Duenas Memorial School Friars decimated the Simon Sanchez High School Sharks.
With four Nick Anderson to Javian Cruz touchdowns, including a pair of fourth-quarter seemingly impossible highlight-reel snags, the Friars cruised to their 44th straight win 34-6.
“We just have to keep executing our plays and read what the defense gives us,” Anderson said. “It’s about working hard in practice and continuing to get better.”
In front of their home crowd at George Washington High School, the Friars broke open the Independent Interscholastic Athletic Association of Guam midseason classic early. On their first set of downs, Anderson found Cruz with a 20-yard touchdown strike.
“I’ve been watching film and realizing what I needed to do today,” said Cruz, who missed the 2018 season with an injury. “I just implemented that.”
Except for one first-quarter miscue, the Anderson-to-Cruz combination was lethal, combining for 5-for-8 receptions 168 yards. Anderson’s only costly mistake resulted in an interception Jayton Penaflor returned for a 28-yard touchdown.
“I made a few throws that weren’t so good, that I didn’t pay for,” Anderson said. “That one, he got me.”
With Sanchez’s defense keying on Friars' all-star running back Kein Artero and Caiyle Gogue, Anderson relied on the passing game. On FD’s next drive, the pair connected on a screen pass. With daylight between him and Sanchez’s end zone, Cruz rambled for a 26-yard touchdown.
The Friars closed the half with a 45-yard TD reception from Anderson to Cruz.
In the Friars’ first three games, Artero ignited for 13 touchdowns – their run game has been their bread-and-butter. Midway through the third quarter, Artero scored his 14th touchdown but was later injured and helped off the field.
As Artero lay on a bench on the sidelines with his jersey off and in obvious discomfort, Anderson and Cruz went to work. After connecting on a 16-yard reception to move the chains, Cruz hauled in a 28-yard over-the-shoulder circus catch touchdown catch.
Leading the Friars’ defense, Ethan Sablan reeled in two interceptions. With 11 tackles, Gene Arriola helped stop the Sharks' ground game. Roy Chargualaf added 10 tackles.
"Sanchez is a good team," Sablan said. "We worked hard all week for this game, and came out ready."
“We need more players,” said Jim Naholowaa, Sharks’ head coach.
In other action, the Guam High School Panthers defeated the John F. Kennedy High School Islanders 48-18.
On Saturday at 7 p.m., the GW Geckos take on the Southern High School Dolphins at GW.