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scene in the Southland | CITY SECTION REPORT

Eagle Rock, Gardena Impressive at Start

September 14, 2000|GARY KLEIN

Football teams at Eagle Rock and Gardena sent shock waves through the City Section in their openers and are hoping to build on those performances this week.

Eagle Rock's multitalented quarterback, Torwin Session, led the Eagles to a stunning 51-6 victory over Pasadena Muir, a traditional Southern Section Division III contender that has produced many college and pro players throughout the years.

"We kind of felt we were stepping up, we thought we had the kids to compete with them," Eagle Rock Coach Steve Wahl said. "We had no turnovers and they fumbled quite a bit."

Session, a senior, completed 13 of 26 passes for 236 yards and four touchdowns.

His performance helps make Friday afternoon's game against Palisades a showcase for two of the section's top quarterbacks. Palisades features David Koral, who passed for 295 yards and two touchdowns in the Dolphins' 35-26 loss to Reseda Cleveland.

Like most who follow City Section football, players and coaches from Eagle Rock--the Northern League runner-up last season--did a double take when they heard or read that Gardena shut out Northern League power Franklin, 12-0, in a nonleague game at Franklin.

Gardena, which played in the Invitational championship game last season, is a strong team regarded as a contender for the Marine League title. But no one in the City seems to remember the last time high-powered Franklin was shut out at home.

Gardena stopped the Panthers three times inside the 20-yard line. Defensive back Byron Green had nine tackles, intercepted a pass and blocked a field-goal attempt. Lineman Leo Nobles had seven tackles, including a sack, and pressured talented Franklin quarterback Daniel Gonzalez throughout the night.

"We showed last year that we could compete against good passing quarterbacks," said Gardena Coach Marshall Jones, whose team plays Huntington Park Friday. "That was a very good way for us to start the season."

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