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Valencia Closely Follows Its Game Plan to Defeat Anaheim

November 09, 1996|PAUL McLEOD | TIMES STAFF WRITER

ANAHEIM — The game plan was simple and everyone at Glover Stadium knew what it was.

The final result, though, was so easy it was downright shocking.

Valencia defeated Anaheim, 14-0, Friday night and firmly put itself back in the hunt for another Orange League title.

Mixing pounding runs by fullback Julian Gomez, slashing carries by tailback Bryan Munoz and all-purpose wing Tarl Lang with an occasional pass from quarterback Eric Young, the Tigers jumped out to a two-touchdown lead midway through the second half and left the rest up to their defense.

Defensive end Brandon Blackley led the charge for the Tigers, who were facing one of the county's best passers. But Anaheim's Luis Gomez, recuperating from the flu, was constantly harassed by the blitzing Tigers. He left the game with a neck injury and only 22 yards passing halfway through the final quarter after being sacked. He completed four of 14 attempts.

Backup quarterback Jimmy Gorman completed six of eight passes for 60 yards.

"We were not clicking all night," Colonist Coach Allen Carter said. "They came out with ball control and ran it down our throats. Valencia was right on target."

Just as the Tigers, who have now recorded four shutouts, had hoped.

"This was a huge win for us," Valencia Coach Mike Marrujo said. "Big, big, big. We knew we had to win to possibly have a chance to play for a league title."

Valencia has won or shared 10 league titles under Marrujo, and has appeared in the playoffs 15 times in the last 16 seasons. But a playoff appearance this season wasn't assured until Friday night.

The Tigers marched from their 26-yard line to the Anaheim 25 on their first possession, but the drive stalled when Young couldn't get more than six yards out of a screen pass to Matt Randolph on fourth and 10.

But the next time Valencia touched the ball, the Tigers drove from their 48 for a touchdown. The 11-play drive included 38 total yards from Gomez and ended with a two-yard plunge by Alex Martinez with 8 minutes 54 seconds left in the second quarter.

Gorman fumbled the ensuing kickoff after a 13-yard return and Valencia was back in business at the Colonists' 28-yard line. Gomez gained four yards, then Munoz burst up the middle on a 24-yard touchdown run.

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