Bob Doran of Mission Viejo High School doesn’t discriminate when it comes to football. Doran’s on-the-field policy is one of equal opportunity.
“I’m comfortable running the ball and catching it,” he said after Friday night’s nonleague game against Fountain Valley at Sheue Field.
That statement was made after Doran had taken affirmative action by catching 5 passes for 82 yards and 1 touchdown. He also broke free for runs of 37 and 48 yards to provide the biggest of the big plays in a 17-15 Mission Viejo victory in front of 3,500 spectators.
Doran wasted little time in proving his point. After Fountain Valley running back Terry Reichert fumbled on the second play of the game and David Bancroft recovered for the Diablos on the Baron 37, Doran took the ball on an inside reverse and went into the end zone virtually untouched. One minute and 10 seconds into the game, Mission Viejo had a 7-0 lead and the early momentum.
“That play kind of set the tone for the night,” a frustrated Fountain Valley Coach Mike Milner said. “I don’t think we came to play.”
Doran’s second touchdown proved to be the game-winner. It came with 10:02 left in the third quarter, on a three-yard pass from quarterback Brendan Murphy. The score was set up when Doran got loose on another reverse and gained 48 yards before being dragged down by Fountain Valley safety Daniel Ramsey at the Baron seven.
In between Doran’s series of big plays, Fountain Valley managed to make a game of it after falling behind early. Mission Viejo kicker Don Roberson connected on a 22-yard field goal with 9:12 left in the first half to give the Diablos a 10-0 lead. Roberson’s kick came after the Diablos had covered 64 yards in 13 plays, a drive that consumed 8:57.
The Barons, held to 79 yards in offense in the first half, couldn’t sustain a drive until late in the third quarter, after Derrick Munck recovered a Mission Viejo fumble at the Fountain Valley 23.
Fountain Valley quarterback John Peart, who began the game with six straight incompletions, completed a string of seven straight passes to get the Baron offense moving. After completions of 11 and 18 yards to wide receiver Dennis Arey, Peart looked for Arey again on a third-and-six play from the Mission Viejo 39. Arey couldn’t hold on, but Diablo defensive back Dennis Erk was called for pass interference on the play, giving the Barons a first down at the Mission Viejo 25.
A blocking below the waist penalty moved the ball back to the 45, where Peart again looked for Arey. This time, they connected for a 45-yard touchdown pass with one minute left in the third quarter. Randy Tan’s conversion cut Mission Viejo’s lead to 10-7.
Doran’s second touchdown extended that lead to 17-7, but Fountain Valley responded with another score on its next possession. Peart passes of 14 yards to Terry Reichert and 29 yards to Arey set up Reichert’s two-yard scoring dive with 7:26 to play. Peart rolled to his right and found Arey open in the back of the end zone for a two-point conversion to cut Mission Viejo’s lead to 17-15.
Luck went Fountain Valley’s way in the next few minutes as Mission Viejo had a 37-yard run by Todd Yert that might have put the game out of reach called back on a holding penalty. Four plays later, Yert fumbled a pitch and Hahn Lau recovered for Fountain Valley at the Mission Viejo 49. With 3:12 remaining, the Barons still had a chance.
On the following play, Peart’s pass was deflected high in the air and Roberson, playing free safety, intercepted and returned the ball to the Mission Viejo 48.
Mission Viejo (3-0) had its first win over Fountain Valley in three tries.
“That was a sweet win,” Mission Viejo Coach Bill Crow said. “I think the people that watched it got their money’s worth.”
Doran, who provided 137 of Mission Viejo’s 341 yards in total offense, was just happy for the equal opportunities.
“We wanted to develop a more balanced attack this game,” he said.