In a word, Marina High football coach Jeff Turley said he was “overwhelmed” by what transpired on Friday night.
The celebration began before the final whistle, as the senior trio of Pharoah Rush, Asah Harris and Isaia Regan gave their coach a Gatorade bath along the sideline.
Junior running back Brantt Riederich rushed for a career-high 209 yards and two touchdowns, as the host Vikings defeated Huntington Beach 34-14 in a nonleague game at Westminster High.
Marina (4-0), ranked No. 7 in the CIF Southern Section Division 11 poll, earned its first victory in the Oil vs. Water rivalry game since Sept. 25, 2008. When the announcement was made at the end of the game, it was followed by one of the loudest ovations of the evening.
Turley, who received a Coach of the Week honor from the Los Angeles Chargers after his team upset Katella 21-15 on the road last week, said that this win meant more.
“This is one to check off the list,” Turley said. “As big as last week was, this one means a lot more to these kids and this community for Marina.
“I had no idea that they were going to shower me. That was pretty unbelievable. To hear the crowd and the excitement, it’s something that is huge for the Marina community. It’s pretty awesome.”
The Vikings drove 65 yards in 10 plays on the opening drive of the game, ending it with a one-yard rushing touchdown on fourth-and-goal by Rush.
Marina took over with the ball at the Vikings 11 with 25 seconds left in the first quarter. In a matter of 14 seconds, Riederich had broken away off right tackle for an 89-yard rushing score to double the lead at 14-0.
Late in the second quarter, Huntington Beach (1-4) turned to Brandon Cannella at quarterback. He threw deep for tight end Christian Moore. Ronny Slavens batted the ball up in the air, and Dane Brenton was able to run under the ball for an interception.
A penalty on the return put the ball at the Marina 11. The Vikings had already scored once from that distance, and they struck gold again on the next play.
Riederich bounced out to the left and broke a last-ditch tackle by the Oilers for his second 89-yard rushing touchdown. The play stretched the Marina lead to 21-0 with 1:04 to go in the second quarter.
“I’m loving the new formation that we have with Pharoah Rush out there with us,” Riederich said. “Both running backs out there is working perfectly, like thunder and lightning.
“We’re really digging that. It’s pretty cool.”
Huntington Beach got on the board right before halftime. After sitting out the previous drive, Brady Gardner re-entered the game and orchestrated a 64-yard drive. It began with a 22-yard pass to Luke Adelman. Gardner then connected with Chase Quinn for 27 yards over the middle, before finding the senior receiver again for a 15-yard touchdown with 15 seconds left in the half.
Marina quarterback Jack Miller threw a 13-yard touchdown to Brenton on the Vikings’ first possession of the third quarter.
The Vikings added on with a 27-yard rushing touchdown from Rush in the fourth quarter. Eli Anderson blocked the extra-point attempt, but Marina had extended its lead to 34-7 with 9:20 remaining.
Huntington Beach scored a second touchdown late, as Cannella broke out of a possible sack and scored on a tough one-yard scramble.
Marina had fumble recoveries by Ryder Malloy and Regan, which came off sacks by Seth Wilson and Harris, respectively. Conner Long also had an interception.
“There is not a day that we don’t pour out blood, sweat and tears for everything that we do out here,” Harris said. “Just to come out on Friday and have it actually work out, it’s amazing.
The Vikings’ four wins tie the most that the program has won in a single season in Turley’s six years at the helm.
“We’re capable of going all the way,” Harris said. “Honestly, as long as we can stay together and do what we need to do, there’s nothing that we can’t do.”
Marina 34, Huntington Beach 14
SCORE BY QUARTERS
Huntington Beach 0 – 7 – 0 – 7 — 14
Marina 14 – 7 – 7 – 6 — 34
M – Rush 1 run (Church kick), 6:45.
M – Riederich 89 run (Church kick), :11.
M – Riederich 89 run (Church kick), 1:04.
HB – Quinn 15 pass from Gardner (Hoffman kick), :15.
M – Brenton 13 pass from Miller (Church kick), 8:31.
M – Rush 27 run (Church kick blocked), 9:20.
FV – Cannella 1 run (Hoffman kick), 1:02.
HB – Ferrin, 7-20.
M – Riederich, 11-209, 2 TDs
HB – Gardner, 8-18-1, 87, 1 TD.
M – Miller, 5-14-1, 79, 1 TD.
HB – Quinn, 3-43, 1 TD.
M – Brenton, 3-76, 1 TD.
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