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High school quarterbacks pass, run and put up big numbers

'It's a problem for defenses when you can throw and run,' one coach says of the dual-threat quarterbacks. This 21st century football is producing lots of points.

September 21, 2013|Eric Sondheimer

One reason for all the yardage being piled up and the many points being scored during the first four weeks of the high school football season is the proliferation of quarterbacks who can pass and run.

It's 21st century football, and defensive coordinators are suffering nightmares trying to teach their defenders what to do.

These are among the two-way threats who had big Friday nights:

Cristian Solano of San Fernando passed for 164 yards and two touchdowns and ran for 219 yards and two touchdowns in a 42-20 win over Van Nuys Grant.

Alif Grayes of Mission Hills Alemany passed for 245 yards and ran for 112 yards and two touchdowns in a 45-28 win over Corona Centennial.

Jalen Greene of Gardena Serra passed for 286 yards and four touchdowns and ran for 53 yards and two touchdowns in a 48-18 win over Dorsey.

—Sophomore Marshal Cohen of Studio City Harvard-Westlake passed for 223 yards and three touchdowns and ran for 108 yards and one touchdown in a 65-24 win over Sylmar.

Blake Barnett, a 6-foot-4 junior at Corona Santiago, ran for 246 yards and five touchdowns and passed for 132 yards and one touchdown in a 56-7 win over Santa Fe.

Two other quarterbacks didn't need to run. In only 1 1/2 quarters, Brady White of Newhall Hart completed eight of 11 passes for 272 yards and four touchdowns in a 56-7 win over Bakersfield Ridgeview. Colorado-bound Cade Apsay of Canyon Country Canyon completed nine of 13 passes for 159 yards and three touchdowns in a 55-14 win over Quartz Hill.

"You're looking for a thrower first, but you want an athlete back there, because it's a problem for defenses when you can throw and run," Hart Coach Mike Herrington said. "I think the days of a big, tall pro-style quarterback are falling to the side."

Best start in 21 years

Mission Viejo Trabuco Hills has a 4-0 record, its best start since 1992. Jake Breeland, a 6-6 junior receiver, caught a 79-yard touchdown pass in a 27-17 win over Huntington Beach. Quarterback Tommy Kelley passed for 263 yards and two touchdowns.

Coach Scott Orloff said two final nonleague games against Santa Margarita and JSerra from the Trinity League should help reveal whether his team will be able to give Mission Viejo (4-0) some competition in the South Coast League.

Scoring machine

Matt Byer, a 6-1 senior receiver at Oak Park, had touchdown receptions of 19, 75, 66, 30 and nine yards in a 52-27 victory over Calabasas. He has 13 touchdown catches in four games.

Defensive stars

Believe or not, there are some good defensive players this season. Ainuu Taua of Lompoc had five sacks in a 44-21 win over Dos Pueblos. Will Jones had three interceptions in Morningside's 40-6 win over Compton. Cedric Musik had 3 1/2 sacks in Redondo's 28-14 win over Culver City.

Twitter: @LATSondheimer

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