ORANGE COUNTY HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL PREP EXTRA : This Time, It’s Pacifica’s Turn for Late Rally


Pacifica, which two weeks ago learned the pain of fourth-quarter collapse in a loss to Huntington Beach, got the the chance to make another team suffer Friday.

Geoff Gilpin caught a one-yard touchdown pass from J.D. Stern with nine seconds left to give Pacifica a 16-10 victory over Los Amigos in the Garden Grove League opener for both teams at Garden Grove High.

Pacifica (3-1), which trailed at halftime, 10-3, scored two fourth-quarter touchdowns for the victory. Huntington Beach had rallied for 17 second-half points to beat Pacifica, 23-21, Sept. 15.


The first second-half touchdown came after a Los Amigos fumble gave the Mariners a first down at their 36 late in the third quarter.

Pacifica then went on a 11-play drive, its most impressive of the game. The touchdown came when Stern, a junior, completed a 15-yard scoring pass in the left corner of the end zone to Casey Huffmire.

The Mariners didn’t have to move nearly as far for their game-winning touchdown.

Pacifica’s Jeff Burt recovered a fumble by Los Amigos quarterback Jacob Sanchez at the Lobos’ 21 with 1:28 to play. The ball was knocked loose by Russell Morfin, who hit and spun Sanchez as he was about to throw.

Pacifica appeared to be playing for field-goal position, but Hamm broke a 17-yard run to the Los Amigos four. The touchdown came two plays later.

It was fitting that the winning touchdown came on a pass, considering that was Pacifica’s favorite method of movement much of the game. Stern was 18 of 43 for 219 yards with a touchdown and an interception.

“We didn’t have that number in mind,” Pacifica Coach Bill Craven said about 43 attempts. “We had a really sophisticated passing plan, but Los Amgios made some adjustments and took a lot of things away. . . I’m happy we won, but I would not have been happy if we lost this game, 10-3.”

Los Amigos (2-2) took a 7-0 lead on its first possession when Shaun Tagatauli scored on a one-yard run on fourth down. The drive was keyed by Greg Fausto, who broke a 45-yard run. Fausto finished with 120 yards but was held to 30 yards in the second half.

Ryan Cleary added a 26-yard field goal to give Los Amigos a 10-3 lead with 8:13 left in the half.