After all the trick plays and all the long passes, it was old-fashioned defense that came to the rescue for the Crescenta Valley High football team.
The Falcons recorded five sacks, two in the final minutes, to beat Arcadia, 27-20, and clinch second place in the Pacific League.
"That was our game plan, just blow through the middle of their line," said Nick Yerton, who had two sacks and a touchdown.
The game was supposed to be a matchup of two running teams, but it did not take long for either squad to abandon its conservative game plan. Early, Arcadia's Chris Nelson caught a short crossing pass and broke lose for an 89-yard touchdown.
Crescenta Valley (6-4, 4-1 in league) answered with two trick plays--Yerton scoring on a 19-yard fumblerooski and Mark Kier catching a 56-yard flanker reverse pass. The Falcons led, 24-13, at halftime.
With Falcon running back Kenny Pritchett rushing 17 times for 28 yards on a sore ankle, Crescenta Valley could manage only one more field goal.
Apache quarterback Richard Searing threw a 34-yard touchdown pass to Demario Franklin, closing the gap to 27-20.
Arcadia (4-6, 2-3) got the ball back near midfield with 4:38 left. But Crescenta Valley's Mike Benedetto and Dan Dailey sacked Searing on consecutive plays to clinch the victory.