Eastlake (6-2, 1-1) finds redemption on Senior Night with a Titanic victory over Mater Dei 49-7.
After their Bye week and crushing loss to open league play, Eastlake came out hitting on all cylinders. The Titans opening drive started in Crusader territory after a big fourth down stop going 44 yards in five plays capped off by a Ryzhon Mccoy 3-yard touchdown run. Eastlake’s depth was put on display during the first drive as Mccoy lined up behind snap rushing four times for 48 yards and completing a pass on his only attempt for 11 yards. Daniel Amon would play quarterback the rest of the way and was efficient. It was a collective effort from the offense as five different players would score. Running Back Roman Coe led the rushing attack with two rushing touchdowns, Micah Pietila-Wiggs had a 45-yard scamper, Parker Merrifield punched one in, and Daniel Amon hooked up with Jalyn Jackson for a 55-yard touchdown.
In the first half, Eastlake had one impact play after another on defense and special teams. Defensive Captain Josh Mccurty was a disruptor with bone-crushing hits, Marcus Houtchens and Donyal Thompson tagged-team on sacks and plays behind the line of scrimmage and Cornerback Jalyn Jackson had an interception shutting down his side of the field. One of the more impressive plays was on kickoff as Derrick Speed used his speed to outrun the Crusaders kickoff return team to make a diving tackle at the 10-yard line. Those kind of plays don’t show up in the box score, but the effort was well worth mentioning.
Mater Dei (4-4, 1-1) and Head Coach John Joyner now knows what it feels like to be on both sides of a 49-7 result as they defeated the Titans last year with the same score. There is still a lot to play for as the Crusaders travel to Olympian (4-4, 1-1) to play the Eagles and the Titans look to remain alive for the league title as they play badly-bruised Bonita Vista (0-9, 0-3).
The Mater Dei Crusaders (4-3, 1-0) look to remain undefeated in the Metro-Mesa League as they battle in-town rival the Eastlake Titans (5-2, 0-1).
With only a couple miles separating both schools, it’s hard to fathom that the schools went on a five-year span without facing each other. For South-Bay-Football followers, it’s a shame to not have seen these successful football programs face each other over that period. It wasn’t until the restructuring of new teams in the Metro-Mesa League last year that entangled both schools back in battling on the gridiron. Last year, Mater Dei showed who the new Sheriff in town was trouncing the Titans 49-7.
Two weeks before league play, Mater Dei took a huge hit losing Sophomore Running Back Aiden Calvert. According to Head Coach John Joyner, Aiden was beginning to find his groove right before he went down late against Oceanside Week 5. In great programs when one man falls, two or three must rise to the occasion and while Running Back Christian Paquian has filled in nicely the play of Jayden Flores has had a huge impact both offensively and defensively. Senior Quarterback Cameron Smith has put the offense on his shoulders and will have his work cut out for him against a good Eastlake defense.
One week before league play, Eastlake lost one of the top lineman in the county due to unsportsmanlike conduct against Chula Vista Week 6. William Dunkle was suspended for three games and after the bye week last week the senior has two more games to serve. Before Dunkle’s suspension, Eastlake was dominating the competition beating their opponent by an average of 22 points per game and positioning themselves as the favorite to win the division. That all changed in a 31-28 loss to Otay Ranch to open league.
Eastlake still has more depth than Mater Dei, but can they overcome not having one of the best and biggest players in the state? You can only find out on KUSI’s Prep Pigskin Report at 10:30 pm.