Prep Football : Los Alamitos Overpowers Marina : Gragnano Passes for Three Touchdowns in 29-0 Victory
One thing remained obvious throughout the Los Alamitos-Marina football game Thursday night at Westminster High School:
Since last season, little has changed with either team.
Los Alamitos, a traditional defensive power, shutout Marina, 29-0, in front of an estimated 1,300.
Last year, the teams met and the outcome wasn’t much different as Los Alamitos beat Marina, 27-0.
Thursday night the Griffins (3-0-1) played excellent defense as usual, and junior quarterback Todd Gragnano showed why he’s--again--one of the county’s best.
On the flip side, Marina (0-4) had tough goings the entire game.
The Vikings, which finished last season 1-9, started the game with three consecutive kickoffs going out of bounds, and ended it staring in the face of the Los Alamitos second string.
Gragnano, with great pass protection and facing only moderate defensive pressure, completed 15 of 26 passes for 217 yards and three touchdowns.
The first, a 14-yard pass to senior Eric Thompson, was an impressive finish to an exciting drive. Gragnano evaded several Marina linemen en route to the touchdown pass, and connected on the touchdown with pressure all around.
Los Alamitos took a 9-0 lead less than two minutes later when Christopher Park sacked Marina quarterback David Schultz in the end zone for a safety.
Eric Caesar, who rushed for 45 yards in 10 carries in the game, scored the next touchdown with 6:02 remaining in the first half. Caesar caught a 10-yard scoring pass from Gragnano, after helping Los Alamitos drive from midfield.
Los Alamitos took a 22-0 lead with just 32 seconds remaining in the first half. Phil DeMatteo caught a 13-yard pass from Gragnano, but the conversion pass fell incomplete.
Marina couldn’t answer. The Vikings had trouble in all aspects of their game.
Schultz completed just 1 of 6 passes for 6 yards in the first half, 4 of 18 for 39 yards for the game.
Stacy Kagasoff, a senior fullback, led the Vikings’ ground game, rushing for 44 yards in 17 carries.
Chris Stewart led the Griffin ground game, rushing for 88 yards in 17 carries.
“We kind of pooped out at times, but I’m happy with the win,” Los Alamitos Coach John Barnes said. “I mean, 29-0 is a real nice score. We rose to the occasion.”
For Marina Coach Chris Ramsey, the night was a tough way to build his players’ confidence.
“That’s the thing I’m most concerned about right now,” he said. “We really just need to get a real good win in.”
“I’m hoping that’ll be next week.”
That’s next Friday, when the Vikings take on Long Beach Millikan. Things can change.