SANTA MARIA CA — The No. 20 state-ranked (JC Athletic Bureau Poll) East Los Angeles College football team’s eight-game win streak ended with a 21-13 upset loss to Allan Hancock College.
“Hancock is a good football team and they executed exactly what they wanted to do,” said ELAC head coach Bobby Godinez. “They were the better team today. No doubt about it. It’s a good football team and they’re going to win a lot of games.”
The Huskies previous loss was on Sept. 17, 2016 to Antelope Valley College, 29-25. ELAC hosts Antelope Valley next Saturday, Sept. 16 at Weingart Stadium with a 6 p.m. kickoff.
The heavily favored Huskies lost a shocker today. “We overlooked our opponent thinking it was going to be an easy game” said defensive back Chad Earle (South Carolina / Seneca HS). “We weren't prepared mentally.”
Down 21-6 with 9:53 remaining in the game, the Huskies rallied back with two drives that could have sent the game into overtime, but fell inches short.
“We fought back to be in it at the end of the game,” said Godinez.
ELAC scored with 6:06 left in the game from sophomore running back Nicholas Hutson’s (Paramount High School) two-yard run, which culminated a 10-play 59-yard drive.
After the ELAC defense held the Bulldogs to two yards in three downs, the Huskies began a drive from their 37-yard line with 3:57 remaining.
With the crowd rocking and thumping, ELAC marched 41 yards in 10 plays. The rally fell inches short when sophomore quarterback Jorge Amaya’s (Sotomayor HS) pass fell off the fingertips of sophomore wide receiver Jamal Tate (Victor Valley HS) near the end zone.
In the first half, Allan Hancock jumped out to a 3-0 lead with 1:57 left in the first quarter. Allan Hancock’s Jordan Pollard drilled a 26-yard field goal. The Huskies previously stopped the Bulldogs from scoring a touchdown from a first-and-goal at the five-yard line.
Allan Hancock added a touchdown with 11:33 left in the half and led 10-0.
ELAC freshman defensive back Raeshawn Roland (Arcadia HS) intercepted a Jimmy Kelleher pass at the Bulldog’s 27-yard line with 6:43 left in the half. Two minutes later, ELAC scored a touchdown. The drive took five plays.
Freshman quarterback Phillip Tran (San Jose / Archbishop Mitty High School) completed an 8-yard touchdown pass to sophomore wide receiver Kenny Allen (Fairfax HS) with 4:44 left in the half. The PAT failed and ELAC crept to within four, down 10-6.
Mistakes dictated the Huskies sloppy play on offense, including more than a dozen dropped balls. ELAC threw two interceptions and had 76 yards in penalties including a 15-yarder that nullified a 53-yard gain. “We shot ourselves in the foot over and over,” said Godinez.
ELAC lost two fumbles, one recovered for a Hancock touchdown. “We gave the game away,” said sophomore defensive lineman Amarray Jay (North Carolina / Northern Durham HS).
The Huskies didn’t gel as a team on both offense and defense until the final five minutes of the game.
“Sometimes in life the best teacher is failure,” said ELAC sophomore Domo Nelson (Sun Valley Polytechnic HS). “We had an early arrival at school and a long (four hour) bus ride. We came out a little sluggish, but we picked it up at the end.”
Tran was 11-of-18 passes for 99 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions. Last week Tran threw for 293 yards, sixth-most yards in the state.
Hutson led the Huskies in rushing with 41 yards gained and one touchdown. Tate hauled in eight passes for 69 yards.
Defensive standouts for ELAC included freshman DeAndre Watson (Millikan HS) who had 10 tackles, eight of them solo. Freshman linebacker Garret Rogers (Don Lugo HS) had eight tackles.
Garrett, along with sophomore defensive lineman Trestan Kueneman (Chino HS) each have 18 tackles in two games, tied for 23rd best in the state.
Sophomore Aubrey Mosley-Laughlin (Monrovia HS) and freshman defensive lineman Jeremiah Jones (Pasadena HS) each recorded seven tackles against Allan Hancock.
Despite the loss, the ELAC fans acknowledged the exciting game with full-throated support even after the hard-fought loss.
“We needed this to humble us,” said freshman running back Andrew Arguelles (Charter Oak HS). “We know our (potential) on the field. We will bounce back.”
Follow ELAC Athletics at http://athletics.elac.edu/landing/index and ELAC Huskies Athletics on Facebook.
submitted by Tadzio Garcia