By Martin Henderson, Patch.com
Lions unleash a focused defensive effort, and the offense is steady in an impressive victory.
JSerra had never been ranked in the Orange County Top 10 andplayed another ranked opponent—until Friday.
And with all eyes on the seventh-ranked Lions and fifth-ranked Trabuco Hills, JSerra didn’t wilt under the spotlight.
The Lions remained unbeaten in impressive fashion, but more importantly, beat a team that was supposed to be more physical and could match their big-play offense. Ultimately, JSerra didn’t have any big plays. But behind the effort of quarterback Nick Robinson, running back Casey Eugenio, and a defense that was dialed in, the Lions made plenty of little plays to emerge with the biggest nonleague victory in the program’s history.
Another important aspect: If Trabuco Hills—expected to finish second to Mission Viejo in the South Coast League—does make the playoffs, JSerra will have a feather in its cap should it be vying for a wild card berth. And if Trabuco is the team JSerra is competing against for a wild card berth, the Lions will have the head-to-head advantage.
Score: JSerra 37, Trabuco Hills 15
Key Stats: Casey Eugenio rushed 27 times for 122 yards and a touchdown, and Nick Robinson completed 14 of 20 passes for 164 yards and two touchdowns for JSerra.
Pivotal Moment: JSerra had gotten inside the 10-yard line but was forced to kick a field goal for a 17-7 lead in the third quarter. On its next possession, again with first down inside the 10, a penalty moved the Lions back to the 20. Robinson connected with Dante Pettis for a 17-yard gain, and the next play D.J. Bailey scored to go up 23-7. It was a three possession lead and the Lions had clearly survived any momentum shift from Trabuco’s late score in the first half.
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