East County Sports

Pack B.I.G.’s help pound Norsemen

 

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2021 EAST COUNTY PREP FOOTBALL

WEST HILLS 49, VALHALLA 0

By Nick Pellegrino

ECS staff writer

RANCHO SAN DIEGO —- The vaunted ground game of the West Hills Wolf Pack saw the right side of the line heavily contribute for seven rushing touchdowns, defeating host Valhalla, 49-0, in Friday’s (Sept. 24) Grossmont Valley League contest.

How big did they play? How about B.I.G.

The right side of the line —  junior guard Lance Briseno, senior tackle Trevor Imbimbo, and senior center Yad Galaly — led the way, mounting a 35-0 halftime lead. And when the Pack scored on the opening drive of the second half, it meant the third running-clock closing to a Valhalla contest this season.

Meanwhile, West Hills (6-0 overall, 2-0) now has posted its second-best winning streak to open a season in school history. The record was set by the pass-happy Pack of 1995, when they opened 9-0 before losing to, of all teams, Valhalla. That team included current head coach Casey Ash.

It’s not exactly avenging a loss from a quarter-century earlier, as the Pack coaches dug into their roster to give everyone a chance to gain minutes and game experience.

For the contest, the Wolf Pack collected 385 yards on the ground, spread among nine different ball carriers.

“It has been great that we have great depth,” Ash said.

Senior slotback Dylan Snyder accounted for the game’s first score on a run of 13 yards.

Following a blocked punt, sophomore Diego Calderon scored a few plays later from 2 yards away.

“That (blocked punt) was really by accident as we left our defense in,” Ash said.

But the big play of the night came on the Pack’s next possession.

Nathaniel Greene took the ball on a pitch to the right side, followed the trio of Briseno-Imbimbo-Galaly — the “B.I.G. brothers” — and romped 63 yards to the end zone to cap the first quarter with a 21-0 lead.

In the second quarter, Calderon (3 yards) and Snyder (11 yards) tallied scores for a 35-0 halftime lead.

 

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Calderon added his third score from the 11 in the opening drive of the second half, then the Pack removed nearly all of their starters.

For Valhalla, the best special teams play of the first half came on a West Hills kickoff. The boot was supposed to go downfield and out of bounds, but it was scooped into the air. However, obviously knowing a rule that many players don’t even know exists, sophomore “Orange” Julius Shamoon called for a fair catch to avoid his team from possibly losing possession.

A pair of second-half bright spots turned into a disaster for Orange Nation.

Starting running back Dustin Avant busted loose for a 14-yard gain — the longest run the Norsemen had all night to that point — and a first down. However, Avant came out of the contest with an apparent leg injury and did not return.

Late in the fourth quarter, Valhalla quarterback Tommy Logan ran a fake handoff, kept the ball, racing, and turned around left end for 36 yards and for a touchdown in an effort to avoid the shutout in the final two minutes.

However, the officials ruled he barely stepped out of bounds near the West Hills 24, nullifying the score for Valhalla (1-5, 0-2 GVL).

“Our defensive line with Ashton Condin and Trevor Imbimbo played great,” Ash said. “This group of players on this team are mature in the classroom and mature on the field, never overlooking what appears to be a weaker opponent. Our goal is to be the best West Hills team to ever play and continue to remain undefeated.

Colin Dill added a 1-yard touchdown run.

“Diego Calderon and Nathan Greene, played great this evening,” Ash said “Dill had some nice reads and a couple of nice runs.”

The shutout was only the second blanking in series history between the schools, dating back to the opening of West Hills in 1989. Three years later in 1982, West Hills stopped the Norsemen, 25-0. The Pack now leads the all-time series, 14-12-1.

Next week, Valhalla, currently seventh in the SDSCIF Division IV playoff rankings, will host El Cajon Valley. West Hills, currently sixth in the official D-III playoff rankings, will gain its bye date, then they will continue a three-game road trip against the Braves on Oct. 8.

“The best part of the 6-0 start going into the bye is being pretty healthy,” Ash said. “In 1995, the Pack team I played on went 9-0, then lost a trap game to a Valhalla team we overlooked because they had an inferior record, and ended up 9-1 ending the regular season. That being said we will be looking at ECV film closely and will not take them lightly.”

 

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SUMMARY
WOLF PACK 49, NORSEMEN 0

 

West Hills (6-0, 2-0) 21 14 7 7- 49
Valhalla (1-4, 0-2)..  0  0 0 0 – 0
WH – Snyder 13 run  (Benavente kick)
WH – Calderon 2 run  (Benavente kick)
WH -Greene 63 run  (Benavente kick)
WH – Calderon 3 run  (Benavente kick)
WH – Snyder 11 run (Benavente kick)
WH – Calderon 11 run (Benavente kick)
WH – Dill 1 run (Benavente kick)

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