It was right out of the movie "Knute Rockne: All American."
Greg Maw was at a team meeting the day before the final game of his senior season listening to Tom Farmer, an alum who played for Cal Lutheran in the early 70's, tell how he once slipped out of the hospital in a malarial fever to suit up for a Kingsmen game.
Maw, who severely lacerated two fingers carving a pumpkin before Halloween, had been told by his doctor to skip the last game of his collegiate career because of the possibility of infection. But after hearing Farmer, Maw decided his injury shouldn't keep him from kicking against Azusa Pacific.
With his left hand so heavily wrapped that only the tip of his thumb showed, Maw was flawless on three conversions to help Cal Lutheran to a 21-17 victory.
Fann-tastic: Albert Fann of Cal State Northridge Monday was selected offensive player of the week in the Western Football Conference.
Fann, a junior from Cleveland High, rushed for 251 yards and two touchdowns in 28 carries on Saturday to carry CSUN to a 24-13 victory over Cal State Sacramento. Fann's effort fell a yard shy of Tom Bonnell's Northridge record for rushing yards in a game set in 1972.
The record probably would have fallen had Fann been given another carry with CSUN running out the clock. The Matadors got the ball for the last time with 2:03 left, but reserve Lance Harper carried on CSUN's final three plays.
In addition to his rushing total, Fann had 58 yards receiving, 41 yards in kickoff returns and completed a 31-yard pass. Fann leads the WFC with 1,195 yards rushing, but, with one game left to play, he's still 370 yards shy of Mike Kane's CSUN single-season record.
Improbable? Yes. But considering his performance on Saturday, perhaps not impossible.
Miller time: Jerry Miller, Cal Lutheran's president, was conspicuous in his absence from Cal Lutheran's season finale against Azusa Pacific. Miller is a key player in the decision as to whether Bob Shoup will return as Kingsmen coach next season or in the future.
Reporters searched for Miller at Saturday's game before finding that he had pulled off a nifty end-around. He was reportedly in Palm Springs for a business meeting.
Title game: In a way, Northridge is right where it wanted to be going into its final game of the season. The Matadors are playing in the game that will decide the Western Football Conference championship.
Unfortunately for the Matadors, win or lose, the title won't be theirs.
Southern Utah State upset Portland State, the WFC's two-time defending champion, earlier this season and needs a win against CSUN to earn a share of the conference title.
Northridge needs a victory for its fourth consecutive winning season.
Correction: While Valley College defeated Pierce for the third time in a row on Saturday, the Monarchs still trail, 14-9, in the series between the rival schools.
Ground force: Valley's victory against Pierce was its third in a row and fourth in the last five games after the Monarchs started the season 0-3.
The emergence of a potent rushing attack has been the key to Valley's rise.
After rushing for only 101 yards in the first three games, Valley has gained more than 200 yards a game in its last five.
"I said at the start of the season that we'd be a team to reckon with in divisional play," Coach Chuck Ferrero said. "It just took us a while to get some experience."
Ferrero also credits consistent play on the offensive line. Early in the season, Ferrero never knew which linemen were going to practice because of injuries.
"We're beat up just like everyone else is at this stage of the season," Ferrero said. "But it's constant. We're not shuffling guys in and out like before."
The emergence of Cliff Robinson, a former standout at L. A. Baptist High, hasn't hurt, either.
Robinson rushed for 107 yards in 17 carries against Pierce and has gained 240 yards in the last two games. A thigh bruise that sidelined Allen Moore for the last two games has given Robinson some time to shine.
"He's a coach's guy," Ferrero said of the 5-foot-6, 160-pound Robinson. "He does everything you ask of him. He listens to you and he doesn't complain. He didn't carry the ball once in the first three games and yet, I never heard him complain. He just kept practicing harder and getting better."
One-man gang: Moorpark linebacker Raymund Mosones seemed to always be around the ball Saturday during the Raiders' 47-27 victory over Glendale.
Mosones, a sophomore, intercepted a pass for a touchdown, batted down another pass, recovered a fumble that led to a Moorpark score and had several tackles for losses.
Afterward, Mosones was at a loss to explain his touchdown run, during which he rambled 11 yards then vaulted into the end zone.
"We're taught to run to the sidelines," Mosones said. "I don't know why I did it. I just sort of did it."
Gary Klein and staff writers Mike Hiserman, John Ortega and Brendan Healey contributed to this notebook.