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Reseda Eases Schaeffer’s Fears, 30-14

TIMES STAFF WRITER

Joel Schaeffer’s coaching anxieties have abated.

Now he can enjoy Thanksgiving after his Reseda High football team’s 30-14 victory over El Camino Real in a City Section 3-A Division quarterfinal Wednesday night.

With only two days to prepare for the game and a team that plays according to its emotions, Schaeffer worried about his team’s readiness to play.

“This team’s hard to read, but they’re coming to a peak right now,” Schaeffer said. “Tonight they were breathing fire.”

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Two plays after Reseda’s Tony Mendoza recovered Damon Robinson’s fumble on the opening kickoff, Robert Granillo made a diving catch of a 25-yard pass by Jamaal Washington for a 7-0 Reseda lead less than 90 seconds into the game.

Reseda led, 23-0, at halftime and didn’t allow an El Camino Real touchdown until 3 minutes 57 seconds remained.

Reseda will play Monroe in the semifinals Dec. 1.

Armone Lochard rushed for 156 yards and two touchdowns in 24 carries while following the blocks of fullback Buddy Frederich, who gained 34 yards in seven carries.

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And while the Regents (9-3) showed they were ready, the Conquistadores (5-6-1) committed four turnovers and had 10 penalties for 80 yards.

“This team was not playing together,” said El Camino Real quarterback Shaun Fishman, who completed 12 of 23 passes for 152 yards and a touchdown.

Fishman didn’t enter the game until the second quarter, after Reseda built a 16-0 lead on a 24-yard field goal by Tom Gutierrez and a 21-yard interception return for a score by Michael Martin.

That was starter Michael Conn’s final pass. He completed three of seven for 24 yards.

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Fishman ended his first series by fumbling. Reseda’s Sebastian Zepeda returned it 17 yards to the El Camino Real two, and Lochard took it in from there to make it 23-0.

El Camino Real finally rallied after Lochard capped a 77-yard drive with a one-yard run early in the fourth quarter.

Quincy Wright, 31 yards in eight carries, scored on a five-yard run, and Byron Carnes (eight receptions for 105 yards) caught a 31-yard scoring pass from Fishman with 17 seconds left.


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