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Los Alamitos Settles for 21-9 Win and Playoff Spot

November 10, 2000|VINCE DiCANZIO

It wasn't their most impressive offensive showing of the year, but Thursday's 21-9 victory over Huntington Beach at Veterans Stadium was enough to propel No. 7 Los Alamitos into the playoffs and clinch third place in the Sunset League.

"A win is a win, but I wish we could have done a better job on offense," said wide receiver Tony Holder, who finished with four receptions for 36 yards. "In the playoffs, we just have to play Griffin football like the teams before us. We're lacking on that tradition right now."

Although the Griffins (8-2, 3-2) didn't look as sharp as usual, running back Joe Garcia provided all the offensive spark needed. Garcia scored all three touchdowns for Los Alamitos, including a 69-yard screen pass from quarterback Mike Catalano and touchdown runs of one and seven yards.

He finished with 92 yards rushing in 14 carries and two receptions for 68 yards.

The Los Alamitos defense also stepped up, holding explosive Huntington Beach running back Russell Oschman to 76 yards in 28 carries.

Huntington Beach (2-8, 0-5) took a 3-0 lead in the first quarter on Mike DeHart's 22-yard field goal, finishing off a 46-yard drive. The advantage was short-lived, however, as Los Alamitos answered four minutes later on Garcia's seven-yard touchdown run.

Following a Huntington Beach punt, the Griffins found the end zone again. Garcia caught a screen pass on the left side behind a wall of blockers, reversed field and raced 69 yards for a 14-3 halftime lead. Garcia added a one-yard touchdown run midway through the third quarter for a 21-3 lead.

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