Estancia didn't do anything tricky to defeat Corona del Mar, 27-24, in a Pacific Coast League football game Friday at Newport Harbor High.
The Eagles simply let their offensive line do the dirty work, paving the way to 376 yards rushing and a final victory-preserving drive that gained two first downs in the final 4 minutes 16 seconds to run out the clock.
Andy Romo rushed for 174 yards and two touchdowns in 19 carries and Fahad Jahid rushed for 115 yards and a touchdown in 17 carries for the Eagles.
Estancia quarterback Kenny Valbuena gained more yards rushing than passing--he completed three of 10 passes for 36 yards--and his 75 yards rushing in 13 carries also featured a 27-yard scramble for a touchdown in the third quarter that gave Estancia a 20-10 lead.
Corona del Mar (5-4, 3-1), which can earn a share of the league title with a victory over University (7-2, 4-0) next week, led 10-6 at halftime before Estancia (6-3, 3-1) took control by scoring two touchdowns following two Sea King turnovers to open the third quarter.
"We challenged them at halftime," Estancia Coach Dave Perkins said. "We told them we're not making one adjustment. Then they just executed. There's no quit in these kids."
Corona del Mar didn't give up either. Joe Barber's 65-yard touchdown pass to Matt Moore cut the lead to 27-24 with 9:37 remaining.
Then Barber and Blake Hacker, who rushed for 160 yards and a touchdown in 20 carries, had the Sea Kings moving again on their next possession, but the drive stalled on the Estancia 27 after Eagle defensive back Jeremy Valdes broke up a pass intended for Eric Snell.
So with 4:16 remaining, Corona del Mar's Jon-Luke Del Fante attempted a 45-yard field goal that was long enough, but missed wide right.
Estancia then ran out the clock, with the key play coming on Estancia's conversion of a third and four with 2:10 remaining following Corona del Mar's final timeout.
Freddy Rodriguez, who also had an interception and fumble recovery, gained nine yards by running left behind a punishing block by pulling right guard Cesar Romero.
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League Overall School W L T W L T University 4 0 0 7 2 0 Estancia 3 1 0 6 3 0 Corona del Mar 3 1 0 5 4 0 Costa Mesa 1 3 0 5 4 0 Laguna Beach 1 3 0 2 7 0 Northwood 0 4 0 2 7 0
* Laguna Beach 31, Northwood 21
* Estancia 27, Corona del Mar 24
* University 42, Costa Mesa 14
Thursday, Nov. 9
Northwood vs. Costa Mesa at Newport Harbor HS
Friday, Nov. 10
Estancia at Laguna Beach
University vs. Corona del Mar at Orange Coast College