CALISTOGA — The Calistoga High football team upped its record to 3-1 with a convincing 48-6 win over visiting Potter Valley in front of an appreciative home crowd at its campus field Friday night.
The Wildcats have plenty of offensive fire power and it was all on display. Sophomore quarterback Christian Caldera led the way with three touchdown runs, including a 25-yard keeper on Calistoga’s opening drive of the evening. Caldera also tossed a 40-yard TD pass to Isaac Garcia midway through the second quarter.
Caldera made it clear after the contest that he preferred running the ball to passing.
“I’d be a running back if I could,” he said. “I really prefer running the ball.”
Joey Russo scored on a 20-yard run late in the first half to put Calistoga up 42-0.
Wildcats running back Fernando Rios credited the offensive line with opening the way for the home team’s seven rushing touchdowns.
“Our offensive line did really well today,” the senior said. “We knew (the Bearcats) weren’t very quick off the ball. This was a great way to start out our home schedule.”
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Calistoga head coach Jim Klaczak knew his team could have scored more, but decided to show good sportsmanship.
“I’m not a guy who wants to run up the score,” he said. “Potter Valley is trying to build its program and the last thing we want to do is run teams out who are struggling.”
Although Calistoga won the opening toss and deferred to the second half, Klaczak chose to give the ball back to Potter Valley after halftime.
“You want to do the right thing and not be a jerk,” he said. “It all turned out fine and we did what we needed to do without continuing to score when the game was essentially over.”
Christian Pedersen capped the Wildcats’ scoring with a 3-yard touchdown run with 8:40 remaining.
Russell Fansler denied Calistoga’s shutout bid by returning a fumble for a score with 5:30 left.
Calistoga is at home again next weekend, hosting Laytonville (2-2) at 6 p.m. Saturday.