With the game on the line, with revenge on the line, with just sheer pride on the line, North Torrance's multitalented quarterback Kenny Brown had all the options in front of him as the Inglewood defense stood two yards between him and victory.
He could either roll to his left or right and throw the ball to his favorite receiver, Michael Bolio, or simply tuck the ball in and make a break for the end zone.
Or he could just follow the lead of his offensive line, which created a big hole for Brown to dive through for the game-winning touchdown with 11 seconds left in the Saxons' 23-22 victory at Inglewood's Coleman Stadium. The victory eased the pain of last season's 38-7 loss to Inglewood in the CIF Division X semifinals.
'As soon as we were done with the playoffs, we started thinking about Inglewood,' said Brown, who ran for two touchdowns and threw for 122 yards and another. It was Brown who led the Saxons (5-0, 2-0) downfield after Paul McCalope scored on a six-yard run to give Inglewood a 22-16 lead. However, North's Ryan Lauderdale stopped Sentinel quarterback Nathan Beavers on the two-point conversion to give the Saxons an opening.
'We know teams that run the wing-T like to go for it a lot,' North Torrance Coach Todd Croce said. 'We tried not to guess [where Beavers would go] on that play. It was critical.'
Inglewood Coach Kevin Moore said his kicker, Carlos Medina, sat out the game with a strained quadriceps. The Sentinels (4-1, 1-1) paid dearly for the missed conversion. Bolio returned the kickoff 30 yards to the Inglewood 47. The Sentinels appeared to have North in a hole on fourth-and-19 but Darius Connor was flagged for pass interference downfield on Bolio. With new life, North picked up two more first downs on Brown's passing and running. Another pass interference set the Saxons up at the three-yard line and two plays later, Brown was in the end zone.
Adrian Barragan drilled it through the uprights for the decisive margin.