Los Amigos football makes big plays late in win at Bolsa Grande
Through three quarters of football on Friday night, Los Amigos High School and Bolsa Grande were locked in a defensive struggle that had yet to yield a point.
As it turned out, the best was indeed saved for last in the Garden Grove League contest.
Los Amigos scored touchdowns on three consecutive drives in the fourth quarter, coming away with a critical 21-14 road win to bolster the team’s playoff hopes.
While Romel Guess, the first-year head coach of the Lobos, does not want to look too far ahead, he knows just how close his team is to securing the program’s first postseason berth since 2016.
“Our plan wasn’t just to make the playoffs,” Guess said. “It was to win a league title.”
Los Amigos (4-3, 2-0 in league) opposes Garden Grove Santiago (6-1, 2-0) on Thursday in a battle between teams tied atop the Garden Grove League. Rancho Alamitos (6-1, 2-0) is also part of a three-way tie for first place.
"[Santiago will] still be undefeated in league, and it’s going to be a battle,” Guess said. “We’re looking forward to another great game, and we’re going to prepare our butts off to come in and punch our ticket next week.”
That reality has begun to sink in after the Lobos rode a strong defensive effort until their offense woke up in the fourth quarter.
Senior running back Bao Huynh had 40 rushing yards on 11 carries heading into the fourth quarter. In the final period, Huynh amassed 144 rushing yards and two touchdowns, including the game-winning score on a goal-line carry with 3:13 remaining.
“Me and my quarterback [Maysen Navarro] just said, ‘The job’s not over,’” Huynh said. “So we just kept running and running and running until we found the hole, and then just hit it and run.”
Bolsa Grande (3-4, 0-2) struck first on a two-yard rushing touchdown by Damion Beaudoin on the second play of the fourth quarter.
Huynh gained 42 yards on the ground on the Lobos’ next possession, capping it off with a seven-yard scamper up the middle.
The Lobos took their first lead when Navarro kept the ball on an option play for an eight-yard rushing touchdown inside the left pylon.
It took just 12 seconds for the Matadors to respond, as Phu Nguyen bolted through the middle of the defense for a 90-yard touchdown on the ensuing kickoff to tie the score at 14-14 with 6:44 to go.
Turnovers played a crucial part in Los Amigos’ victory. The Lobos secured three interceptions in the fourth quarter — by Navarro, JP Gutierrez and Huynh. Gutierrez and Huynh picked off passes to end the Matadors’ last two drives.
Pedro Hernandez also had an interception along the right sideline in the first half to end a red-zone trip for Bolsa Grande.
The Lobos were able to get pressure in the backfield when they needed it from defensive end Juan Hermosillo and nose guard Daniel Robles. Hermosillo was back in action after sitting out the Loara game due to a concussion.
Aside from a 50-0 loss at Garden Grove on Sept. 24, Los Amigos has been in every other game. The Lobos, who won consecutive games for the first time this season, also suffered one-possession losses at Westminster and Costa Mesa.
“We were hungry because we lost to Garden Grove 50-0,” Hermosillo said. “We don’t like the feeling of losing. None of us do.”
Los Amigos athletic director Chris Sandro said the school brought three rooter buses to the road game, and the fans in the stands did not go unnoticed by the Lobos.
“We’re a school,” Navarro said. “We’re all one, and them being here helps us with energy. It boosts us up.”
Garden Grove League
Los Amigos 21, Bolsa Grande 14
SCORE BY QUARTERS
Los Amigos 0 – 0 – 0 – 21 – 21
Bolsa Grande 0 – 0 – 0 – 14 – 14
BG – Beaudoin 2 run (Gonzalez kick), 11:33.
LA – Huynh 7 run (Villicana kick), 9:54.
LA – Navarro 8 run (Villicana kick), 6:56.
BG – Nguyen 90 kick return (Gonzalez kick), 6:44.
LA – Huynh 1 run (Villicana kick), 3:13.
LA – Huynh, 26-184, 2 TDs.
BG – Beaudoin, 10-33, 1 TD.
LA – Navarro, 4-13-1, 26.
BG – Alqam, 14-24-2, 121.
LA – Radilla, 1-16.
BG – Nguyen, 6-48.
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