East County Sports

Eagles post team’s biggest-ever shutout

Granite Hills and Valhalla line up on Thursday. / Dave Dickens

2021 EAST COUNTY PREP FOOTBALL

No. 11 GRANITE HILLS 62, VALHALLA 0

 

By Nick Pellegrino
ECS staff writer

EL CAJON —- It doesn’t matter which team wins, but whenever Granite Hills and Valhalla high schools meet in the Battle of Jamacha Road, it’s always a blowout victory.

Well, there are blowouts, and then there was Thursday’s (Aug. 26) record-breaking triumph.

The defense of Granite Hills allowed just minus-40 yards of total offense in the first half, allowing the Eagles to defeat their neighbors to the south, 62-0, at Valley Stadium.

The victory margin was easily the largest Granite Hills history, snapping the old mark by nearly two touchdowns — Granite Hills bombed Monte Vista, 50-0, in 2006.

Granite Hills (2-0) is seeking to create the opportunity to gain its first section championship after coming close on several occasions, yet never breaking through.

The Eagles sent their calling card on the very first play from scrimmage when junior Derek Ibarra broke through the Valhalla O-line to stop a budding rushing attempt for a 2-yard loss.

The Eagles stopped the third-down play with another combined tackle-for-loss by Brandon Kleist and Trusten Heck.

From there, Valhalla ran only six plays for positive yardage over the balance of the first half.

Gaining great field position — the poorest was their own 44-yard line during the first half — Granite Hills utilized the short field to their advantage,

With lead blockers in left tackle Adam Heller and guard Alejandro Tejeda on the left side, the ground game controlled the ball and the clock.

A 36-yard rush by Joaquin Thomas Jr. set up a short TD pass to junior wide receiver Sean Simpson from quarterback Nico Tomasello on the team’s second series.

On the next series, Valhalla fumbled the ball away on the kickoff, setting up a 30-yard drive that resulted in a 6-yard TD gallop by senior Patrick Brady.

Before the quarter was over, Thomas Jr. found the end zone from 40 yards out for a 20-0 cushion.

The second quarter was even tougher for Orange Nation.

Despite a sack and a near interception, Corey Thompson-Miller earned a score from 21 yards out on a hand-off up the middle for a 27-0 lead.

Valhalla attempted to make adjustments, but one maneuver totally back-fired.

With the linebacker blitzing, Tomasello slipped over the defender into the vacated area to find teammate Derek Edmund, a sophomore, who turned upfield along the Granite Hill sideline, racing untouched for 73 yards.

Moments later, after the Eagles forced a three-and-out, junior Davion Green raced 48 yards with a punt runback, going toward the left side, but was walled-in by Norsemen defenders. So Green did a nice pivot and ran completely across the field to the right pylon for a score and a 41-0 halftime advantage.

At the intermission, the press was lively looking through various record books, which proved to be useful when the Eagles scored twice in the opening minutes of the second half.

The second-half kickoff was returned for more than 90 yards by Thomas Jr. for a score.

“We wanted to score fast to set the tempo,” Thomas Jr. said. “Our second- and third-team guys got great reps and were rewarded with great plays.”

On the ensuing kickoff, Valhalla allowed the ball to bounce twice before grabbing the loose football, but the return man was immediately smacked down for a fumble recovery by the Eagles, setting up a 5-yard sweep by junior DeaSean Floyd.

Moments later, Valhalla’s second snap resulted in a 19-yard interception TD runback by junior Daniel Netto.

Despite the final result, the Valhalla defensive secondary turned a pretty decent performance.

After keeping Hilltop out of the end zone in Week 1, the Norsemen broke up four passes and had interceptions by Anthony Kasyouhannon and Gio Alejo.

Mubain Abass had a tackle-for-loss in the first half for Valhalla as the Norse stopped the Eagles’ first series on the Granite side of the field.

The loss was the biggest in Norsemen history, topping a 52-0 setback to Eastlake in 2018. Fortunately, the school still holds the regular-season record for most points against a Grossmont Conference opponent (70 vs. El Capitan, 2005; although Helix once scored 71 vs. Monte Vista in a CIF playoff game in 2002).

Granite Hills will face Madison next Friday at Valley Stadium.

“We’re focusing for Madison and we plan on having the same result… a win,” Thomas Jr. said.

EAST COUNTY FOOTBALL
GRANITE HILLS
Margin of Victory in Shutout

Year    Opponent   Score
2021
2006
1985
1999
1979
1986
2017
1986
2018
1994
2014
1984
1985
1981
vs. Valhalla
at Monte Vista
vs Santana
vs ECVHS
vs. Santana
at Mira Mesa (CIF playoffs)
vs. ECVHS
at Santana
at Valhalla
at Grossmont
vs ECVHS
vs Valhalla
vs. San Diego HS
vs Santana
62-0
50-0
49-0
48-0
48-0
46-0
45-0
43-0
43-0
42-0
42-0
42-0
41-0
41-0

 300 total views,  2 views today

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *