Palmdale Gets Defensive and Routs Highland, 43-0

Share via

The movable object won out over the resistible force.

Palmdale High, with the 70th ranked defense in the region, looked like the 1985 Chicago Bears on Friday night, stuffing defending Golden League champion Highland, 43-0, in a league opener at Palmdale.

The Falcons (4-1-1), who were allowing 440 yards a game, found the perfect foil in Highland (2-4, 0-1), which sputtered to 61 yards and its third shutout.

“We’re an embarrassment to the Golden League,” said Coach Lin Parker of Highland.

“We got stuffed by the second worst defense in the area.”

There was a collective sigh of relief from the beleaguered Falcon defense, which allowed the Bulldogs into Palmdale territory on only one play.


“There’s been a lot of razzing of our defensive coordinator [Steve Lockhart],” Coach Jeff Williams said.

“But he’s going to hold his head high this week.”

So will several other Falcons, who have toiled in the shadow of flashy quarterback Terry Furlow and receiver-defensive back Tyrone Culver.

Furlow completed 10 of 15 for 151 yards.

Culver caught five passes for 63 yards.

But it was the bit players who took the spotlight.

“We’ve a lot of key players,” said Bobby Bynum, who rushed for 109 yards in 13 carries and scored on runs of six and 26 yards in the first five minutes.

“It just takes time sometimes for it to show.”

Emanuel Johnson, a senior transfer from Compton Dominguez, added 80 yards in 12 carries and scored three touchdowns and two two-point conversions.

Matthew Valentino added a 30-yard field goal.

Palmdale, averaging a league-best 333 yards, rolled up 399 against a defense that ranked first among Golden League schools.

Palmdale’s defense, led by linebackers Sergio Santana and Peter Mata and lineman Bruce Cardenas, stood tall.


Of Highland’s 29 rushing plays, 11 went for losses and the Bulldogs finished with four yards rushing.

They were tagged with a 20-yard loss early in the second quarter when a snap was launched over the head of punter Jose Duarte, resulting in a safety.

Josh Mejia, the Bulldogs’ leading rusher, finished with only 33 yards in 10 carries.

It’s been an impressive run for Palmdale, which has played all six of its games against defending league champions.

The Falcons, 2-8 last season, positioned themselves for a possible showdown against Antelope Valley (5-1, 1-0) on Nov. 3 for the league championship.