ZEPHYRHILLS — After last week's 21-9 win over Sunlake, Zephyrhills still had a bundle of injuries to overcome before facing Wesley Chapel on Friday. But after beating the Wildcats 28-0 behind three touchdowns from Alex Paniagha at Bulldog Stadium, everything seems to be going just fine heading into next week against Pasco.
Zephyrhills coach Tom Fisher said his offensive line played a lot better against the Wildcats.
"They came up real big tonight," Fisher said. "Hopefully they learn from this game and realize they can go up and play with anybody."
The Bulldogs (2-3) went up 7-0 in the first quarter on a bad exchange between the center and holder on a field goal attempt. Holder Tyler Pohjolainen tossed the ball to kicker Tyler Guy, who then turned the play into a 15-yard touchdown pass to running back Paniagha.
The Wildcats could not get pass a speedy Bulldogs defense, which sacked Wesley Chapel quarterbacks six times, including two by defensive end Ben Williams.
Wildcats running back Hunter Joyer rushed for a game-high 91 yards on nine carries, 48 coming in the final 32 seconds before halftime.
Zephyrhills went up 14-0 before halftime on a Tyler Guy 10-yard touchdown pass to tight end Cory Christensen.
The Bulldogs opened the second half with a 10-play, 58-yard drive, capped by a screen pass to Paniagha, who took it in from 9 yards out.
Paniagha had a great night offensively, rushing for 55 yards on 18 carries and a touchdown to go along with his two receiving scores.
"That drive to open the half was really big, and it just really gave us a lot of momentum to finish them off," Paniagha said.