Garden City High School’s defense compiled another shut out Friday, as the Buffaloes defeated Great Bend 45-0 at Buffalo Stadium.
GCHS running back Josh Janas also had a big night, as the offensive line controlled the line of scrimmage, as he scampered for four touchdowns on the night.
"Our defense and special teams are playing really well — kickoff coverage team and punt team — especially this game," GCHS head coach Brian Hill said. "They had the ball backed up repeatedly and just really proud of these kids and the way they played."
Buffalo quarterback Caleb Wiese got the scoring going in the first quarter for Garden City, throwing an 81-yard pass completion to wide receiver Jerry Arteaga for a touchdown. Issac Rivera kicked the point after attempt for a 7-0 lead.
The GCHS defense got on the scoreboard later in the quarter, as defensive back Christian Reyes intercepted a Panther pass and sidestepped several Great Bend players to score a 35-yard touchdown. Rivera kicked the point after attempt.
Janas scored his first touchdown of the night on a two-yard blast in the second quarter. Rivera kicked the extra point. Rivera added a 24-yard field goal midway through the quarter to give the Buffaloes a 24-0 lead going into halftime.
The third quarter was all Janas, as he scored on runs of 49 yards, 22 yards, then finished it off with a 5-yard touchdown giving the home team a 45-0 lead going into the fourth. The fourth quarter had a running clock due to the score.
"Our mentality (offensively) — by moving under the center — has brought a new attitude to the offensive line and I think it’s given our offense kind of an identity that we struggled to find earlier in the season," Hill said. "It’s really helped us, even throwing the ball. Now because we’re running the football so well, we’ve get a lot of eyes in the backfield and we’re able to get the ball to Jerry (Arteaga) on a big play. Those are things we were missing earlier in the season."
Garden City had 41 plays on the night for a total of 402 yards of total offense. Great Bend ran 33 plays and had 190 total yards, 117 in the air.
Wiese was 4-of-8 passing for 154 yards and one touchdown.
Janas finished the game with 22 carries for 227 yards and four touchdowns. Arteaga had two pass receptions for 105 yards and one touchdown.
The Buffalo defense forced four turnovers in the game. Defensive back Ryan Heiman grabbed three interceptions away from the Panthers receivers and Reyes had one for a touchdown.
Garden City, now 3-5 overall, finishes the Western Athletic Conference play with a 2-2 record.
"I really think they’re starting to grow and mature, wish it would have happened early, but it’s nice to see and that we’re playing well as the right time of the year," Hill said. "This was the two games going in to the playoffs, you don’t want to go limping in, you want to go in with confidence. This is a really great group of kids and excited about continuing the season."
The Buffaloes will travel to Manhattan on Friday for Week 9 of the season, the first round of playoffs.