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Foothill Makes Most of Chances


Nothing beats the momentum gained by a safety. Nothing takes it away quicker than a turnover.

El Modena experienced both within a matter of seconds Friday, and the latter proved to be the beginning of the end for the Vanguards in their 37-24 loss to Foothill in a Century League opener at El Modena.

El Modena (3-3, 0-1) had taken a 17-15 lead midway through the third quarter when its defense sacked Foothill quarterback Robert Koster in the end zone. The Knights were then forced to kick off, and El Modena's Tyrone Brinson had a nice return to Foothill's 42-yard line.

But on the next play Ian Souza dropped a handoff and Foothill's Norman Katnik Jr. recovered the ball at the line of scrimmage.

The Knights (3-3, 1-0) took advantage of the miscue and moved the ball 58 yards in 10 plays, with Terrence Newman scoring on a one-yard run on the first play of the fourth quarter. Foothill then added a two-point conversion on Koster's pass to James Dummitt for a 23-17 lead.

On El Modena's next play from scrimmage, quarterback Tony Calderon dropped the ball while faking a pitchout and Kevin Carter recovered at the Vanguards' 20. Two plays later, Matthew Goto scored on a three-yard run and the Knights tacked on another two-point conversion for a 31-17 lead.

"Obviously, we picked up the safety and the momentum was in our favor, but we gave the ball back to them and they went down and scored," El Modena Coach Jason Hitchens said. "But still we're not in bad shape, but then we turn the ball over on the very first play and they do it again, and against a good football team you're not going to get away with that."

To make matters worse, El Modena turned the ball over on its third consecutive play from scrimmage when Calderon was intercepted by Larry Gomez at midfield. Three plays later, Darren Crume caught his third touchdown pass of the game, which was Foothill's third touchdown in 2 minutes 17 seconds, giving the Knights a 37-17 lead.

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