East County Sports

Fishburne directs Homecoming victory

MIKEL OLIVER chases Mira Mesa quarterback Noah Tumblin Friday night. / EastCountySports photo




By Ramon Scott



SPRING VALLEY – Steele Canyon superstar THOMAS FISHBURNE didn’t produce a climactic thriller of a victory Friday night as is his norm.

Instead, Steele Canyon’s do-everything man used his entire ensemble to thoroughly humble previously unbeaten Mira Mesa, 52-26, in front of a large Homecoming crowd.

Steele Canyon’s JORDAN ANDERSON is off for a touchdown against Mira Mesa. / EastCountySports photo

Fishburne, a senior three-year starter, turned in one of the best games of his career, throwing for 268 yards and four touchdowns with no interceptions. He was 18-of-25 through the air on the night.

And while Steele Canyon (3-2) has had to reserve Fishburne’s heroics usually for the final moments, tonight the running game was buzzing, too, behind an inspired offensive line and junior running back ISAIAH THOMPSON.

Thompson rushed for 96 yards on 15 carries, including a touchdown.

The Cougars’ got a big special teams play while fans were still filling the Steele Canyon sideline.

IZZY BRELAND knocked the ball loose from the return man on the opening kickoff and VALON MARTINEZ alertly grabbed the loose ball, giving the Cougars the ball at the 7-yard line.

PERRY STEELE ran a sweep to the left side untouched on the next play for a 7-0 lead 10 seconds into the game.

The Cougars would recover four Mira Mesa (4-1) fumbles on the night.

Mira Mesa quarterback Noah Tumblin showed his dynamic skills out of the pocket on the next drive, taking off on a 68-yard zig-zag run deep into Cougar territory.

Then he added a 13-yard TD run, followed by his own two-point conversion for an 8-7 Mira Mesa lead.

Fishburne parlayed a 41-yard kickoff return from JORDAN ANDERSON into another quick score, hitting NATHANIEL GORDEN for a 9-yard touchdown.

The Marauders drove down for a touchdown with 1:18 left in the first quarter to tie the game, 14-14.

Thompson gave Steele Canyon the lead with a touchdown dive at 10:15 of the second quarter to make it 21-14 Steele Canyon.

DARIN WALTON recorded a sack to stunt a Marauder drive, one of his two sacks on the night.

After Thompson picked up 40 yards on a carry through the Mira Mesa defense, Fishburne then threw another TD pass, this time to RANDY JORDAN from 15 yards out, giving the Cougars their third score of the quarter.

The Cougars took a three score lead with 3:46 to go before halftime when Anderson scored on a 29-yard reception from Fishburne, making it 35-14.

THOMAS FISHBURNE makes a tackle Friday night. / EastCountySports photo

Gorden caught a 25-yard touchdown from Fishburne for a 45-26 lead.

Thompson threw to KENDELL JOHNSON for another TD, this one in the final quarter, making the final 52-26.

Meanwhile, it was an impressive night for the Cougars’ offensive line, playing in front of Cougar O-Line legend MARIO YAKOO, who made the homecoming return along with the near-capacity crowd.

Senior SAMUEL CORTEZ, juniors WILLIAM TELLOUS and SOMMER AUDEH, and sophomore DARRIN ROLDAN led the front.

“Guys stepped up, the seniors stepped up,” Steele Canyon head coach SCOTT LONGERBONE said “Fish obviously played well, he always does.

“Once we made some adjustments in the second quarter, we kind of slowed them down enough to take a lead.”

Fishburne also had an interception and booted a field goal.

He kept his receivers busy the entire game this time.

Johnson had six total receptions, as did Steele, the duo combining for 136 yards.

ISAIAH THOMPSON rushes past Mira Mesa Friday night. / EastCountySports photo

Gorden had four catches for 75 yards, as seven different targets caught passes.

“We have to keep bring the intensity in practice,” Fishburne said. “Coming into league we have a tough league we gotta keep it rolling The last two wins have been momentum and we just have to keep it going.”

The Marauders were averaging 40 points per game, but Tumblin was held 50 yards under his passing yard average.

Senior TANNER EWERT and junior DAVID LIPSCOMB recovered fumbles for the Cougars.

Steele Canyon is set to meet third-ranked Helix in the Grossmont Hills League opener next Friday night.

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