El Cajon Ford East County Game of the Week: Grossmont Foothillers 48, Valhalla Norsemen 13
The El Cajon Ford East County Game of the Week featured a battle of the undefeateds in week 8. The 6-0 Grossmont Foothillers hosted the 6-0 Valhalla Norsemen in a Grossmont Hills League showdown. Critics had noted that neither team had faced strong competition yet this season, so this game was an opportunity for one team to prove their worth of top ten ranking consideration.
Valhalla received to start the game, and looked strong as they marched the ball down the field. Quarterback Bryan Madriz called his own number in the red zone, but after a big hit by Hiller Joe Williams the ball popped loose and was recovered by Grossmont’s Andrew Lira in the endzone. The Foothillers converted the turnover to points on an 80 yard drive that culminated with a James Mackey 1 yard touchdown run.
Valhalla’s offense struggled to rebound in the first quarter; and lost another fumble to the Hillers at the end of the quarter. They got on the board in the second, however. Quarterback Bryan Madriz left the game after injuring his leg on a dive towards the endzone. Jerome Johnson scored on the next play, but the Norsemen missed the PAT.
Later in the second quarter Valhalla fumbled a punt and Grossmont recovered; once again turning it into points. The drive capped with a Hunter Gaines to Zach Jones 28 yard touchdown. The ensuing kick off by Christopher Garcia was a squib, and once again the Norsemen couldn’t handle the ball. They prevented the Foothillers from scoring after their fourth turnover; and went into the half down 14-6.
The second half picked up where the first left off. Grossmont scored on the opening drive with a Kenyon Johnson 15 yard touchdown run. The ensuing kick was once again squibbed and once again fumbled by the Norsemen. Grossmont took over – but did not score. Their next points came at the end of the third quarter, when Gaines connected with Domonique Guevara for a 7 yard score (PAT no good).
The Norsemen responded at the top of the fourth quarter. Brandon Fuller found the endzone on the reverse to cut the Hillers lead to 27-13.
Grossmont had a turnover of their own on the next drive, and the Vaqueros recovered. Their drive and comeback attempt was cut short when Raymond Perrault hauled in an interception and returned it for another Grossmont score.
The Foothillers once again pooched the kick, and the Vaqueros booted it away for their sixth fumble (fourth on kicks). Gaines and Guevara connected for another score, and Guevara would find the endzone for a third time late in the game.
Grossmont closed things out with a 48-13 victory and made their case for a top ten ranking. They face Steele Canyon next week and Helix the following week – which will undoubtedly decide the Grossmont Hills League Champion.
PREVIEW: This week’s El Cajon Ford East County Game of the Week features a battle between two undefeated teams. The Grossmont Foothillers are hosting the Valhalla Norsemen in this Grossmont Hills League showdown.
Both teams enter the game with 6-0 overall records, including one league win apiece. However, some are critical that each team has played light non-league schedules. To date the Foothillers and Norsemen have both only beaten two teams with winning records.
Regardless of competition, the Norsemen have been a force this season outscoring opponents 237-14. The defense has produced four shut outs; three in a row coming into the contest with the Foothillers. The offense has been propelled by Quarterback Bryan Madriz and Wide Receiver/Kicker Jacob Paape. Paape set a school record last week against West Hills by notching a NFL worthy 51 yard field goal.
The stalwart Norsemen defense may face their toughest test yet against a highly productive Grossmont Offense. Head Coach Tom Karlo’s teams are known for productive quarterbacks who put up a lot of stats and points, and this year is no different. Foothiller Quarterback Hunter Gaines is second in the east county in total passing yards (1,386), touchdowns (15) and yards per game (231).
Undoubtedly, the team that wins this contest will have the best opportunity to challenge Helix for the Grossmont Hills League title. We will have previews on Friday during the Pre-PR from 5pm – 7pm and comprehensive highlights during the Prep Pigskin Report at 10:30pm.