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Maligned Hart Defense Blitzes Barrett and Co. Into a Submissive State

October 25, 1987|VINCE KOWALICK | Times Staff Writer

One would think that by now Butch McElwee's Burroughs Indians would have learned the number of that truck. They've been hit by it twice.

"They did the same thing to us this year," McElwee said of Foothill League nemesis Hart, which rolled over Burroughs, 19-0, Friday night at Burroughs. "They blitzed us and got in our faces. They rushed more people than we could block."

This was the year that Burroughs, which entered the game ranked No. 2 in the Valley area by The Times, expected to snap a five-year losing streak against Hart. Burroughs' offense was averaging 38 points a game while gaining acres of yardage. McElwee's defense was shutting down opponents at the slight expense of 130 yards a game.

But it was Hart's defense, ranked last among Southern Section teams in the Valley area, that dominated. Limited to minus-6 yards rushing and 76 yards total offense, Burroughs made only four first downs.

"I don't know what happened," McElwee said. "We weren't expecting them to be that tough on defense. Our guys came in at halftime and looked half beaten."

Coach Rick Scott's rampaging Indians blitzed Burroughs quarterback Jeff Barrett right out of his shoulder pads, sacking him three times for minus-26 yards and a safety. Barrett completed 10 of 23 passes for 82 yards and was intercepted once.

"For some reason," Barrett said, "they knew what we were going to run. When we were going to run a screen, they yelled 'Watch the screen.' We have a reverse-pass that we haven't run all year and they were yelling 'Watch the reverse-pass.' It was weird."

Hart quarterback Darren Renfro, meanwhile, riddled the much-heralded Burroughs defense, completing 15 of 21 passes for 251 yards and a touchdown. But Renfro credited the win to his defense.

"Our defense is bad ," he said.

Said Scott: "Jeff Barrett is a great quarterback, but we went after him with both barrels. He hadn't seen anything like us this season."

Deja vu: Reseda Coach Joel Schaeffer happily found himself on the other side of the coin Friday night when his team rallied for 29 unanswered points in the second half to defeat Sylmar, 36-26.

"The unique thing about it," Schaeffer said, "was that last year during the regular season we were ahead of University at halftime, 24-0, and they came back and scored 29 points and beat us 29-24."

What made the Regents' comeback even more special for Schaeffer was that it was Reseda's first win over Sylmar in three years.

"In my twenty-some years of coaching," Schaeffer said. "I've never seen a team with so much character. Everybody was asking me what I said in the locker room at halftime. It was no magic speech. I just said, 'You guys gotta call upon your character.' "

Reseda trailed, 26-7, in the last minute of the third quarter when Sam Edwards returned a kickoff 95 yards for a touchdown. Running backs James Swindell and Ronald Wilkinson both rushed for touchdowns and linebacker Shawn Peet returned an interception 38 yards for a score.

Time runs out: El Camino Real, the dubious owner of a 17-game losing streak, was six feet away from ending the two-year drought Friday night against Kennedy. Then confusion set in.

With Coach Skip Giancanelli's team on Kennedy's two-yard-line, the final seconds ticked away before the Conquistadores could get off another play. The game ended in a 13-13 tie.

"I thought we had one more timeout," Giancanelli said. "I had a misunderstanding with the official." Giancanelli also was unable to locate a certain player on the sideline to carry in a play. Giancanelli would not name the player.

Why didn't Giancanelli attempt a field goal? Paul Hasson earlier was successful on an extra point, and a field-goal attempt would have been from about the same distance.

"We've had problems with the special teams," he said. "The way we'd been running the ball, I thought we could get in to score."

El Camino Real's last victory came in 1985, when it defeated Cleveland, 23-7.

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