East County Sports

Senior Stability: Fish, Cougars peaking


Senior THOMAS FISHBURNE, of Steele Canyon, defends during the fourth quarter of the Cougars’ win over Grossmont. / EastCountySports photo



By Ramon Scott



SPRING VALLEY – It’s a little late to rewrite the headlines, but Steele Canyon senior THOMAS FISHBURNE led his school to a state division football title while playing with a fracture in his right knee last December.

But there was little time for concern for the Cougars’ athletic superstar.

“After all, we had a state championship to win,” said the quarterback who also runs a decent point for the SCHS basketball team, which stayed alive in the Grossmont Hills League championship race with a 59-42 win over visiting Grossmont on Senior Night Tuesday.

Fishburne said he injured the knee in a 51-14 loss to Grossmont, in which he was knocked from the game.

Of course, Fish returned the next game and led Steele Canyon to nine-consecutive wins on the way to the school’s first state football banner.

Whether “Touchdown Tommy” knew he was actually playing with a break wouldn’t be discovered until he went to the floor in a game during the last week of September, where he re-injured himself.

Steele Canyon and Grossmont in action on Tuesday night. / EastCountySports.com photo

He spent the next month resting the bone, but the Cougars have now won six of their last seven since his return, including 28 points in a win over Helix last Tuesday, which gave Steele a season sweep of the Scotties and helped keep the Cougs alive for a share of the title into the final night of the season on Friday night.

These ‘Cats were already looking good while Fishburne was sidelined, but the team – which includes standout senior scorer GAGE SANDERS and rising junior GRANT CHILDS – looks to be in peak form at just the right time in a competitive playoff division that the Cougars have to think they have a shot against nearly all of the teams above them in the likely bracket.

Childs had 19 points and Sanders added 11 for the Cougars.

Steele Canyon improved to 6-3 in the Grossmont Hills League, trailing first-place Helix by one game.

The Cougars play at league-winless rival Valhalla, which will be playing their “playoff” game in a spoiler role in the Friday night contest at 7:30.

Steele Canyon would need the win over the Norsemen and a Helix loss at West Hills to share for the Grossmont Hills patch.


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