Buena Park offense can run with the big dogs

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It seems rather likely that if the Buena Park High football team wants to challenge for a CIF-SS Southwest Division Championship, the Coyote defense will need to find a way to slow down some elite offenses along the way. But while the Coyote defense has had some struggles, the team’s offense could find a way to take some pressure off its counterpart. The Coyote offense has hardly missed a beat this year, with playmakers abounding, and led by the arm and legs of quarterback Zach Taylor. The Buena Park offense has scored 390 points this year in its eight victories.

It seems rather likely that if the Buena Park High football team wants to challenge for a CIF-SS Southwest Division Championship, the Coyote defense will need to find a way to slow down some elite offenses along the way. But while the Coyote defense has had some struggles, the team’s offense could find a way to take some pressure off its counterpart. The Coyote offense has hardly missed a beat this year, with playmakers abounding, and led by the arm and legs of quarterback Zach Taylor. The Buena Park offense has scored 390 points this year in its eight victories. One of Taylor’s best weapons this year has been getting the ball into the hands of transfer Elijah Bynum. The two have combined for more than 1,300 rushing yards this season and 18 touchdowns. Taylor has also found Bynum for four passing touchdowns as well. Bynum has stepped into an offense that was high-powered last year and certainly found his fit. “Bynum is a special player … I’m really proud of him, he’s come a long way,” Head Coach Anthony White said. In the Coyotes’ shootout win over Sonora in the final regular season game, Bynum had a big night and made several plays when it seemed the play was breaking down, or Sonora had him locked up. It’s a trait Taylor said makes Bynum a key go-to guy. “We’re just confident that when he gets the ball that he can make a play,” Taylor said. The Coyote offense also has dangerous weapons in Jeremiah Hawkins, Elijah Gates, Devon Cooley and A.J. Allen. Hawkins is a dangerous all-purpose weapon who has more than 500 yards rushing and receiving and six touchdowns. Allen is a vital receiver in the passing game, as well as Cooley, who seems to find open space in the red zone with six touchdown receptions. But it all revolves around Taylor’s ability to not only make plays himself, but distribute the ball to his plethora of offensive teammates. It’s something he has worked on this season. His individual stats are down from last year, as Taylor has looked to make the offense more versatile. “I’ve learned more how to be the glue to keep my teammates together … you just have to keep everybody on the same page,” Taylor said. It’s something that Bynum has recognized, and been one of its beneficiaries. “He’s great, he gets the ball where it needs to go, he reads the defense perfectly, and we get it done every time,” Bynum said of Taylor. However, the Coyotes had trouble this year against some of the better teams on its schedule. Their two losses were by a combined score of 86-14. Edison blanked them early in the year and La Habra proved it was still the big dog in the league by rolling to a 48-14 win. But the Coyotes certainly proved they can play against other playoff teams. Warren, one of the Coyotes’ pre-league wins, was a league champion and the Freeway League itself saw five of its six teams qualify for the playoffs. Aside from the shootout win over Sonora, the Coyotes were hardly challenged in its three other league wins. If the Coyotes need to, they just might be able to win a track meet or two. They certainly have the offensive weapons and a quarterback with the talent and experience to lead them. And he has the game acumen to know what his team needs from him and his teammates. “He’s coachable, we have a great staff and whatever we tell him he’s open, he believes it, he trusts it and we all trust each other,” White said. If the Coyotes can get a home win against Yorba Linda on Friday, they would likely face a second round matchup against fourth-seeded Corona del Mar. Second-seeded San Clemente is also in their half of the bracket. No. 1 La Habra is in the top half and would not be in their way until a potential finals game.

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