EAGLES FALL TO THE BRAVES, SHIFT FOCUS TO JSERRA SHOWDOWN
Cerritos, CA. - October 21, 2016 - In a stark contrast to their game against Mater Dei, the Eagles (4-3, 0-2) looked like a different team in the first half against California’s number two ranked team, St. John Bosco. Against the Monarchs, the Eagles trailed 28-0 at the end of the first quarter and 56-0 at the half. Last Friday, the Eagles defense looked poised, confident and disciplined as they held the Braves scoreless in the first quarter and gave up only 13 second quarter points before heading into the locker room trailing 13-3. Despite scoring on their first offensive drive of the second half, the Eagles would give up 34 second half points and ultimately fall to the Braves, 47-10.
Santa Margarita’s offense had trouble finding a rhythm despite several quality drives that were hampered by penalties. Senior quarterback Richard Wagner completed 17 of 32 passes (53%) for 165 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions. On the receiving end of that touchdown was senior wide-out Giulio Pozzuoli, who finished his night with two receptions for 38. The leading receiver for the Eagles on the night was sophomore Munir McClain who had six catches for 74 yards. Senior Grant Calcaterra had five receptions for 53 yards with a long of 32. On the ground, the Eagles collected a modest 76 yards, 65 of which went to Chad Magyar who carried the ball eight times. Of this 65 yards, 49 were ripped off on one run alone that went through the heart of the Bosco defense.
The special teams had a spark with kickoff returner Darian Fernandez. Opposing teams have started to kick away from junior Malone Mataele, but they are quickly realizing they need to pick their poison. Fernandez had five kickoff returns for 80 yards and a long of 45, with Mataele bringing back two kickoff returns for 40 yards in all.
With the two Trinity League juggernauts out of the way, the Eagles now unfold a new layer of the Trinity League season. The Eagles host JSerra (4-3, 0-2) tonight for the Santa Margarita Homecoming game at Saddleback College with kickoff set for 7:00pm. Both the Eagles and Lions enter tonight’s matchup winless in league in what now feels like an almost “must-win” for both teams tonight. JSerra dropped their league opener to Orange Lutheran in an overtime loss, 30-29. They would then go on to lose to Servite by a score of 38-14 last week at home.
JSerra is averaging 118 yards on the ground and 167 yards in the air, with the Eagles averaging 168 rushing and 197 passing yards per game. At tonight’s game, Santa Margarita will be honoring the 1996 CIF Championships team that was led by former Santa Margarita head coach and current JSerra head coach, Jim Hartigan. The 1996 CIF Championship team finished the season 13-1 and would go on to defeat Newport Harbor 38-0 to claim the Division V title.
Source: Sean Zeitler, Sports Information Director