Villa Park High School’s defense recorded 10 sacks and had with three interceptions to post a 21-6 nonleague victory over Brea-Olinda in front of 850 at Brea Field on Friday night.
Two of the Spartans’ interceptions led to Villa Park touchdowns. The first, by defensive back Mark Johnson, set up an abbreviated three-play drive that started at the Wildcats’ 32. An eight-yard completion and a personal foul penalty gave the Spartans a first down at the 12, setting up quarterback Mike Cederoth’s 12-yard scoring pass to tight end Scott Creagan with 6:44 left in the opening quarter.
Villa Park took a 14-0 lead with 8:41 remaining in the half with another three-play drive, this one covering 75 yards. Cederoth went to running back Jamie Nelson for a 22-yard completion on the first play of the drive, fullback David Rose carried for a 13-yard gain and another first down and then broke off a 40-yard scoring run to cap the drive.
Rose was the game’s leading rusher with 104 yards on 11 carries. Nelson added 73 yards on 18 carries for the Spartans, who racked up 353 yards to the Wildcats’ 242.
Brea cut Villa Park’s lead to 14-6 at halftime with the help of the Spartans’ only turnover. Brea’s Brett Koch recovered a fumbled snap at the Spartans’ 44-yard line and the Wildcats mounted a four-play drive that was aided by a pass interference penalty. Quarterback Eric Oden went over center from a yard out with 16 seconds left in the half and the Wildcats’ conversion kick failed.
The Wildcats were never able to establish a running game against the Spartans, who held Brea to one yard rushing in the first half and minus 24 yards for the game. The 10 sacks by Villa Park resulted in 48 yards lost rushing for Brea.
Brea mounted one other drive in the first half, but came away empty. The Wildcats drove 42 yards to the Spartan 29 in six plays, but was held to just two yards on the next four plays and turned the ball over on downs.
After a scoreless third quarter, the Wildcats appeared to be driving toward another touchdown early in the final period. Brea went 59 yards to the Spartan 21 but on second down, Villa Park’s Brandon Beadle intercepted an Oden pass at the 6-yard line to set up the Spartans’ touchdown.
On the sixth play of the Spartans’ drive following Beadle’s interception, Cederoth teamed with split end Mark Johnson for a 42-yard scoring play. Brea appeared to have Johnson tackled near the 10, but Johnson broke several tackles before eventually finding the end zone. Ryan Hayes’ third conversion kick gave Villa Park a 21-6 advantage.
Cederoth completed 10 of 21 pass attempts for 162 yards and two touchdowns while leading Villa Park to a 2-1 record. Johnson was the Spartans’ top receiver with three catches for 82 yards and a touchdown and Nelson had four catches for 58 yards.
Oden was 19 of 36 for 218 yards in the game and was intercepted three times as the Wildcats fell to 1-2. Richard Palacios took over for Oden late in the game and completed 2 of 3 attempts for 52 yards.
Tight end Mike Knaus of Brea was the game’s leading receiver with five receptions for 99 yards. Teammate Fred Camarena added 67 yards on eight catches for the Wildcats.