East County Sports

Griffins try to find formula against Gauchos



By Bill Dickens
© EastCountySports.com


EL CAJON (10-28-16) — Grossmont College, which has lost three of its last four starts, hopes to find some home cooking in this week’s National Southern Conference game when the Griffins host perennial power Saddleback in a 1 p.m. game at Mashin-Roth Field.

For the Griffins (4-3, 0-2) to have any success down the road they must secure their defense as they’ve given up 158 points in their last four games.

Injuries have dogged the Griffins of late and an instability at quarterback has made matters even worse. An early season injury to starting QB BRAD CAGLE has caused a rotation between the other signal callers. SPENCER MOYER has taken over the helm where he has completed 30 of 103 passes for 5 touchdowns.

RICHARD ESTEVEZ came off the bench against Orange Coast and gave a sterling performance as he completed 17 of 35 passes for 113 yards and 2 touchdowns.

NEHEMIAH BROWN will carry the ground attack for the Griffins with 427 yards and 6 touchdowns on 96 carries.

ADRIAN TOLBERT continues to be the No. 1 pass receiving target. He’s caught 29 balls for 654 yards and 7 touchdowns.

Grossmont’s defense is led by linebackers RYDEN KERR (39 tackles, a sack and a fumble recovery), COLE KIDD (38 tackles, a sack and an interception), RODERICK WOODS (29 tackles) and defensive back KURTIS BROOKS (33 tackles).

Defensively the Griffins continue to struggle. The highlight of the secondary is JORDAN ELLIS, who has 6 interceptions in 7 games. He’s also returned a theft for 105 yards and a touchdown.

Grossmont has made 15 interceptions.

GRIFFIN GRAFFITI:   NELS HALTOM, a 5-foot-10, 180-pound freshman kicker from Bountiful, Utah, was named Southern Conference Special Teams Player of the Week . . . In 17 kickoffs Haltom landed 10 inside the 20. . . 11 of them were touchbacks . . . Six-foot-4, 200-pound wide receiver ADRIAN TOLBERT of CastlePark received SCFA Honorable Mention for catching 5 passes for 200 yards in the Griffins loss to OrangeCoast . . . also receiving SCFA Honorable Mention was freshman southpaw quarterback 6-foot-3, 180-pound Esteves, of Chula Vista, who has come off the bench this season to complete 19 of 37 passes for 344 yards and 3 touchdowns . . . Saddleback leads the all-time series 17-6 with one tie . . . the Gauchos won last year’s game 32-12 in Mission Viejo.

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