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Byrd, Taft Defense Team to Shackle El Camino Real

October 29, 1988|JIM COLEMAN

Kelvin Byrd didn't erase memories of the great Taft High running backs of yesteryear Friday night at homecoming, but if the likes of Jerry Rosenberg, Spencer Horowitz, Stuart Lewis and Donald Dozier were in the stands, they had to be impressed with the latest Toreador sensation just the same.

Byrd, who rushed for 242 yards and 5 touchdowns a week ago, churned out 101 yards in 27 carries and scored 2 touchdowns to lead Taft to a 24-0 West Valley League victory over El Camino Real.

What better choice than El Camino Real, winner of just 2 games in 3 years, for a homecoming game.

"I don't care what anybody says, I think El Camino is the best defensive team we've seen," Taft Coach Tom Stevenson said. "They just shut down our inside game."

But Taft (4-3, 3-2) shut down El Camino Real (2-5, 1-4) everywhere else, holding the Conquistadores to 77 yards--10 in the second half.

Taft limited El Camino Real to just 8 plays from scrimmage in the second half as the Toreadors flexed their ball-control offense behind Byrd.

"If we get ahead and grind it out, it's over," Stevenson said.

Taft scored on its first possession, Byrd knifing in from the 6 to cap a 55-yard drive.

Rich Cosentino passed 14 yards to Uda Walker just before halftime to give Taft a 12-0 lead and Byrd added a 14-yard touchdown run in the third quarter.

Taft's final touchdown came on a 4-yard run by Rob Holland, a converted linebacker.

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