Week 5: Carlsbad Lancers 35, San Marcos Knights 24

We’ve officially reached the midpoint of the CIF football season and this week saw the Carlsbad High School Lancers hand the San Marcos High School Knights their first loss of the season.

The Lancers rode the combination of workhorse resiliency and untouchable explosiveness put forth by running back Luke Armstrong to a resounding 35-24 win and now sit 3-2 on the season. San Marcos will continue into the last half of the season with a 3-1 record.

The first half was an explosive affair, seeing Carlsbad leap out to a very quick 14-0 lead after just the third possession of the game.

The end of the second quarter would see 24-straight points from San Marcos, including two passing touchdowns from Knights quarterback Miles Hastings and a 37-yard interception returned for a touchdown from cornerback Jalen Bainer.

This was to be the end of the Knights’ offensive success, however.

With around four minutes remaining in the second quarter, Hastings left the game with obvious discomfort in his throwing shoulder.  While he attempted a brief return in the 3rd and 4th quarters, his throwing ability was significantly hampered.

After the injury, Dane Olson stepped in at quarterback and Zach Frost took the bulk of the late-game touches, but the big-play explosiveness that Hastings brought to the table simply couldn’t be replicated.

Just before halftime, Carlsbad finally answered back with a touchdown of their own, a 1-yard punch from Carson Sturgess set up by a 22-yard Cole Wright reception.

The second half belonged to Carlsbad’s Luke Armstrong. He gobbled up the vast majority of Carlsbad’s 3rd and 4th quarter touches as the Lancers gradually increased their chokehold on the game. His 35-yard receiving touchdown and 51-yard touchdown scamper in the third quarter were all the Lancers needed.

Armstrong routinely dominated the offensive possessions, including multiple stretches of seven straight rushing attempts.

This allowed Carlsbad to make short work of the fourth quarter’s clock, and before anyone knew it, the Week 5 matchup had drawn to a close.

Carlsbad will bring a veritable mountain of momentum into next week’s tilt with Torrey Pines, while San Marcos will have a chance to rebound against Mt. Carmel.

If Carlsbad can continue to lean on the combination of Keoni Quintana and Luke Armstrong, they’ll make a deadly opponent throughout the rest of the season.

For San Marcos, much of the remaining season will hang on the health of Hastings, or the ability to adapt without him if need be. The incredible talent on the Knights’ squad should carry them just fine.

Check back with KUSI’s Prep Pigskin Report next week for the final scores and highlights from both teams, as well as the rest of San Diego Country.


Preview

We’ve reached the middle of September, and we aren’t just settling into Autumn; we’ve found ourselves in the middle of another great CIF football season. This week, we find ourselves in San Marcos for the second week of Avocado League play between the visiting Carlsbad Lancers (2-2) and the hosting San Marcos Knights (3-0).

This classic medieval mascot matchup will feature a very fresh Knights squad, who just enjoyed a bye-week after a stunning 49-42 Week 3 Game of the Week win over Oceanside. Occupying the opposing sideline, the Lancers are coming off their own Week 4 North County Game of the Week endeavor, coming up just short of Mission Hills, 24-21.

Carlsbad fought hard against Mission Hills, sandwiching a successful onside kick with two last-minute touchdowns to force a 21-17 lead. With just eleven seconds left in the game, Mission Hills channeled the intense emotion of the affair into one final QB sneak, and Joey Armentrout punched the ball across for the Grizzly win. The game came just two days after the unexpected passing of Mission Hills’ defensive line coach, Erik Quamme.

Don’t let their even record fool you, however. Carlsbad is full of talent, led by senior quarterback Keoni Quintana and University of Washington commit Asa Turner. Receiver Noah Vella has been a dynamic threat out wide and has exploded for several long-distance gains this season. Running back Luke Armstrong has been a touchdown machine and will no doubt be pushing to add to his tally on Friday.

It wouldn’t be a game without an opponent, and San Marcos will fit the bill this week. It’s been two weeks since the Knights took the field, and it should be interesting to see what kind of an effect it has on this potent offense. Every team encounters a bye week, and each team handles it differently. For some, it provides a badly-needed respite from the wear-and-tear of the season. For others, it can either prove a disruption to the flow of their season or a jump-start to their offense. How it will impact San Marcos remains to be seen.

What we have seen is offensive firepower. A lot of it.

Quarterback Miles Hastings was the genesis and the revelations of the Knights attack in their Week 3 win, driving the team up the field en route to their first touchdown and delivered each of their final four touchdowns through the air. It was a masterful performance, ending in a 347-yard, four touchdown stat-line. Most impressively, however, was that he completed an astonishing eighteen of his twenty-two passes. Such clinical accuracy will serve the Knights greatly going forward.

A big part of Hastings’ success has been the consistency that the senior running back duo of Zach Frost and Aaron Norita has provided all season, averaging more than 150 yards per game between the two of them. They each eclipsed the 100-yard mark Week 2 against Grossmont and will be trying to replicate their success this coming Friday.

Come watch these Game of the Week alumni battle it out at 7:15 p.m, this Friday at San Marcos High School. If you can’t make it out, remember you can always catch the final score and all of San Diego County’s Prep Football action on KUSI’s Prep Pigskin Report, Friday night at 11 p.m!\.

Categories: This Week’s Games