Earlier in the week, Ocean View football coach Harold Eggers was leery of the Laguna Beach offense which, he said, could score quickly.
He and his Seahawks found that to be true Friday at Ocean View.
Laguna struck fast — and fairly easily — for scores on its first two possessions. But then Ocean View made some defensive adjustments, rode the running of Timmy Robinson and two big plays by Blake Walker, and took advantage of an injury to Laguna quarterback Austin Paxson, to finish fast for a 36-14 nonleague victory.
Robinson, a junior running back who also starts at linebacker, rushed for a game-high 161 yards and two touchdowns on 26 carries. He was bullish up the middle all night, carrying several Breakers on tackle-breaking runs.
He said he likes it when his number is called upon so often.
"It gives me a chance to rest from playing defense," he said, with a smile on his face. "It felt great out there tonight. My line did a great job and is getting better each week."
Robinson had holes opened up for him by linemen Jon Graham, Tyren Hudson, Michael Congelliere, Carlos Islas and Eric Hernandez.
"We know he's a horse and I said, we gotta give the horse the ball," Eggers said of Robinson. "He really hit the middle hard and was tough to bring down."
The outset of the game hardly resembled the finished product for Ocean View, which won its second-straight game to improve to 2-1.
Paxson, who threw for 138 yards in the opening quarter, suffered an injury to his throwing hand when it hit a helmet at the conclusion of his throwing motion early in the second quarter. He exited after his only interception of the game was returned 30 yards for a touchdown by Ocean View strong safety Travis Sparks-Jackson that tied the score at 14-14 with 8:58 left in quarter. The senior did return for one more series in the half but didn't play in the second half.
He was replaced by sophomore Larry Stewart.
"He hurt his hand when he hit that helmet," Laguna Beach Coach Jonathan Todd said. "We'll have to find out just how bad the injury is."
"We were thin to begin with," Todd continued, motioning to injured players, offensive lineman/linebacker Taylor Preston and running back/linebacker Nort Penney, both of whom were in street clothes and their game jerseys on the Laguna sideline. "We started a freshman (Steven Harrison) and sophomore (Drake Martinez) at inside linebacker, and both did a great job. I thought they played like men out there tonight. I also thought Chris (Paul) did an unbelievable job at free safety."
Laguna, which fell to 0-2, took the opening kickoff and marched right down field. From the Ocean View 22, Paxson lofted a pass to the end zone for junior receiver Derek Reigel who out-jumped Ocean View defensive back Andrew Medrano to make a nifty scoring reception. The point after was blocked by Walker, but the Breakers had a 6-0 lead at the midway point of the first quarter.
That lead grew to 14-0 nearly four minutes later, after the Laguna defense forced Ocean View into three-and -out on the Seahawks' first possession of the night and its offense went on a 73-yard drive to score again. Paxson this time lofted a pass to the end zone for Chris Paul and the 6-foot-2 receiver went high over Walker and Medrano to make the grab on a 19-yard pass play. Paxson and Paul then teamed up on a two-point pass with 2:55 left in the quarter.
"We got off to a great start," Todd said. "We were playing a base defense and contained them (Ocean View) pretty well at the start of the game, but then we had trouble stopping their run game."
Robinson scored his first touchdown on a modest four-yard run and then took in a two-point pass from quarterback Nolan Tippy, to make it a 14-8 game with 10:22 left in the second quarter. Robinson finished the half with 77 yards on 11 carries. The Seahawks tied the score four plays later on Sparks-Jackson's interception return.
Ocean View took the lead for good with 1:07 remaining in the half when Tippy hit a streaking Walker down the right sideline for a 50-yard scoring play. Brian Hernandez's point after gave the Seahawks a 21-14 halftime lead.
"It opened up real quick and Nolan did a great job placing the ball," Walker said of the touchdown pass route..
Hernandez connected on a 36-yard field goal to cap the opening drive of the second half to up Ocean View's advantage to 24-14. The drive ate up the first 6:23 of the third-quarter clock. Robinson scored on a six-yard run late in the third quarter to make it 30-14 and Walker scored again, this time by intercepting a Stewart and returning it 30 yards for the game's final score.
Tippy was eight of night for 159 yards with an interception. Walker had 99 of those yards on four receptions and Robinson had five receptions total 60 yards.
Paxson was 12 of 18 for 212 yards with two touchdowns and an interception in less than one half of play. Stewart threw for 86 yards with two interceptions. Paul had six receptions for 124 yards.
The Seahawks defense, which had several big plays by Congelliere at linebacker, held the Breakers to minus-12 yards rushing.
"I thought we did a real nice job of coming back tonight from a slow start," Eggers said. "We made some adjustments on defense by putting speed on the rush, staying on top of their quarterback and taking away the big play. It was tough for them (Laguna) to have their quarterback go down and not have him for the second half."
Ocean View travels to Costa Mesa next Friday for a 7 p.m. nonleague game against Costa Mesa at Estancia High.
Friday night local scores
Huntington Beach 17, Foothill 6
Marina 28, Westminster 26
Thursday's local scores
Edison 27, Dana Hills 21
Fountain Valley 21, Tremescal Canyon 14