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Esperanza, Edison Take Charge in Sunset

Prep football: No. 2 Edison takes charge in third quarter of 16-3 victory, defeating Fountain Valley for first time since 1994.


Edison had to dodge a few bullets to end its five-game losing streak against Fountain Valley on Friday night. Actually, these were more like mortar shells, lobbed repeatedly by the Barons inside the Edison 20-yard line.

Once they survived those, the second-ranked Chargers dropped a couple bombs of their own in the third quarter--a 32-yard touchdown run by Charles Linman and a 57-yard scoring pass from Richard Schwartz to Denny Flanagan--and rode them to a 16-3 victory before a standing-room-only crowd of about 8,000 at Orange Coast College.

Edison's victory sets up a Sunset League title showdown against No. 3 Esperanza on Thursday.

Perhaps more important to the Chargers (8-1, 4-0), they beat their arch-rivals in the "Battle for the Bell" for the first time since 1994.

"For five years we've been talking the talk against these guys," said Schwartz, Edison's senior quarterback. "This time, we walked the walk and we got the bell back."

The Chargers won even though USC-bound tailback Darryl Poston was held to 38 yards (105 under his average) in 13 carries against an alert, disciplined Baron defense.

They won even though Fountain Valley controlled the ball for 20 minutes 22 seconds (to Edison's 9:38) and outgained the Chargers, 223-76, in the first 2 1/2 quarters.

They won mainly because the Barons (4-5, 1-3) scored only three points on four drives inside the Edison 20 in those first 30 minutes. Two missed field goals and an end-zone interception thwarted them.

"That was the main thing," Fountain Valley Coach Eric Johnson said. "We played all right, we just couldn't get any points."

The most significant of the Barons' missed opportunities came in the third quarter, with the score 3-3. They drove from their 20 to the Edison four-yard line, only for Manuel Diaz to drop a third-down pass from Casey Clark in the end zone. Then Clark missed a 21-yard field goal.

Given a reprieve, the Chargers turned around and drove 80 yards to the game's first touchdown, Linman's 32-yard run with 1:53 left in the third quarter.

"That was the key momentum shift," Johnson said. "We drive all that way and don't score, and they drive right down and score."

Edison scored again 1:24 later on Schwartz's pass to Flanagan deep down the right sideline, and Edison's defense--which hasn't allowed a second-half point in four Sunset League games--did the rest.

Fountain Valley's Parris Moore rushed for 161 yards in 24 carries.

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