L.A. Baptist Starts Fast, Hangs On

SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

L.A. Baptist High scored on its first three possessions and then held off Brethren Christian, 21-14, Friday night at Artesia High.

Speculation before the kickoff was that the Knights would be without quarterback Peter Dirksen, who was suffering from an illness.

It was Brethren Christian that felt sick after the opening drive, when Dirksen connected with Timothy Feirfeil on a 37-yard touchdown pass play 1:09 into the game.

Feirfeil set up the drive with a 48-yard return on the opening kickoff.

Dirksen connected again with Feirfeil on a 70-yard scoring pass on the next possession.

Brethren Christian (2-3) cut the lead to 14-7 on a 10-yard run by Brian Pappagalo.

L.A. Baptist (4-1) responded with a seven-play, 68-yard drive capped by Dirksen's 10-yard pass to Garrett Ellis.

Dirksen completed 12 of 17 passes for 275 yards, 237 in the first half, and three touchdowns.

Feirfeil had six catches for 191 yards and two touchdowns.

The Knights had a chance to put the game away with 2:59 left, but Dirksen was sacked on fourth down at the Brethren Christian 18.

Dirksen was sacked six times by Brethren Christian.

L.A. Baptist stopped Brethren Christian's final possession by forcing four incomplete passes.

Dirksen was not the only starter hampered by illness this week.

Running back Derek Suguitan missed practice all week with the flu and was cleared by doctors Friday.

He rushed for 54 of his 61 yards in the fourth quarter.

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