FULLERTON — For someone who tries to emulate Barry Sanders, running back Jermaine Lewis made quite an impression in the California-Texas Shrine All-Star football game Saturday night.
Playing in a one-back offense similar to that used by Sanders' Detroit Lions, Lewis, from Antelope Valley High, thrived in the first quarter of California's 27-12 victory over Texas in front of 6,500 at Cal State Fullerton.
The 5-foot-6, 185-pound Lewis, similar in stature to Sanders, scored the first touchdown of the game on California's first possession.
After quarterback Kevin Feterik of Los Alamitos completed several sideline passes to his wide receivers, Lewis found a hole up the middle on a 13-yard scoring run to give California a 6-3 lead midway through the first quarter.
"I knew this was going to be the system when I came in," said Lewis, who played tailback for the Antelopes. "I was looking forward to the difference."
Lewis finished with a team-high 43 yards rushing in eight carries.
Although Hart running back Ted Iacenda is familiar with the run-and-shoot offense used by California, he started slowly, getting stuffed for one-yard losses on his first two carries late in the first quarter.
Iacenda proved to be more effective coming out of the backfield as a receiver, catching two passes for 33 yards. Used mostly in short-yardage situations, Iacenda rushed for eight yards in five carries.
One casualty of the California formation was Chaminade tight end Gabe Crecion. Crecion, who has signed with UCLA, played offense only in short-yardage situations but did see some time at outside linebacker.
Late in the third quarter, Crecion sacked Texas quarterback Duane Jackson for a five-yard loss. On the next series, Crecion combined with Ennis Davis of Reseda on an 11-yard sack of Jackson.
Davis, largest player on the field at 6-5 and 309 pounds, made the biggest impression of four area defensive players, breaking into the Texas backfield on several occasions and finishing with three tackles.
Other local players included Hart linebacker Marc Zimmerman, who had an interception, and Chaminade defensive back Jason Zdenek.
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