Bishop Amat's Fields Stays on Move : High school football: Running back has shown the ability to beat defenses with speed and strength. Already, he has gained 1,071 yards in 149 carries.

TIMES STAFF WRITER

No one has been able stop Scott Fields. Not Los Angeles Loyola High, the defending Southern Section Division I champion. Not Pasadena Muir's sprinter-filled defensive backfield.

At 6 feet 3 and 195 pounds, Fields has run over, around and past defenders all season in leading La Puente Bishop Amat to a 6-0 record.

He has rushed for 1,071 yards in 149 carries and scored 12 touchdowns, including 127 yards in the Lancers' 22-16 Angelus League victory over Loyola Saturday night, and 242 yards in 22 carries in Amat's 27-22 victory over Muir two weeks ago.

"The biggest thing about him is that he is so beautiful to watch running," Muir Coach Mike Morris said of Fields. "He has that great stride when he is running the ball, along with incredible speed. No one catches him from behind and we have some fast kids."

Fields is the latest in a line of outstanding Bishop Amat running backs. Starting in the early 1980s with Pernell Taylor, who went on to play at Notre Dame, the Lancers have had Randy Tanner (USC), Eric Bieniemy (Colorado) and Mazio Royster (USC).

Fields, though, has been most influenced by his brothers. Arnold played for the Lancers with Taylor, then went to Kansas and later played briefly for the Pittsburgh Steelers. Arby set several school rushing records at La Puente Bassett High.

"Something I always wanted to do was be like my brothers," said Fields, who has seven older brothers, all of whom were running backs. "I never looked up to other athletes because they were my heroes."

Despite the family history, Fields first gained attention on defense. As a youngster, he was a standout defensive end in Pop Warner ball and as a freshman at Bishop Amat.

As a sophomore, Fields was expected to play a lot for the Lancers on defense but had academic problems and was ineligible for part of the season. He finally played a little at defensive end as Bishop Amat won the Angelus League title.

He emerged as a runner last season, rolling up 1,416 yards and 15 touchdowns while averaging eight yards a carry. His running helped the Lancers to their fifth Angelus League title in the last six years.

"Scott began to really assert himself last season," Bishop Amat Coach Mark Parades said. "When he first came here, he was about 6-2 and only 160 pounds. Now, he is a real big kid with a lot of speed.

"What makes him so good is that he is a leader who always wants the ball. He is the type of kid who you want on your team."

Fields says that last season was a learning experience for him and that his success surprised him. Playing in a backfield with Jason Patterson, the Southern Section Division I player of the year, Fields' expectations were not high.

But this season, Fields is regarded as Bishop Amat's key player, which he says he may have taken too seriously at first. The Lancers struggled to early season victories over Riverside Rubidoux, La Verne Damien and Long Beach Poly.

"I was frustrated at first because I was asking much more from myself," Fields said. "Things were not coming easy for me because I had placed too much pressure on myself.

"Each game, the type of runner I am can change depending on the defense. I try to mix it up where sometimes I can be a punishing runner and at other times I'm elusive. The object of being a running back is to not get tackled and I try to do whatever it takes."

He certainly didn't hurt his reputation against Muir.

"Muir has great team speed, but (Fields) just outran their guys to the end zone twice," Parades said. "When he sees the goal line and he has a shot at it, he's gone.

"He has done all of this at a time when we are trying to throw the ball more. We don't give the ball to the tailback 40 times in a game anymore, but he still gets it done."

Fields, though, says he has a long way to go before he can compare himself to other great runners from Bishop Amat.

"I try my best but all of them have done so well," said Fields. "I don't think that I can put myself anywhere near them yet. Hopefully, when I'm all done, I could be compared to them."

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