PASADENA — In scouting Muir High, Hoover football Coach Chris Long told this team about the Mustangs' offensive prowess and the team's ability to use its speed to run off big plays.
He surmised that in order to keep pace, his Tornadoes would have to stay close in the first quarter, along with keeping their opponent's offense on the field as little as possible.
Unfortunately for Hoover, they were able to do neither.
The Mustangs made their share of big plays and the Hoover offense sputtered in suffering a 54-0 Pacific League loss Friday at Muir.
"When we were looking at Muir we knew that they were going to have a lot of speed on offense," Long said. "But I was surprised a little about how quick they were on the defensive side. They have some very good athletes."
The loss drops Hoover to 1-6, 0-4 in league. The Tornadoes' only win of the season came Sept. 9 in a 45-38 nonleague victory against Mountain View.
While giving praise to Muir (3-4, 2-2), Long also alluded to his team's problems in the game, especially when it came to tackling the Mustangs' ball carriers.
"We have had that problem with tackling all season," Long said. "Our guys are in the right places, but they just can't come up with the tackle."
The Tornadoes also had trouble containing Muir quarterback Jeffrey Davis. The senior completed seven of 10 passed for 199 yards and three touchdowns. He had scoring tosses of 52, 63 and 52 yards.
Hoover senior quarterback AJ Pule returned to action after being knocked out of a league game last week against Burbank with concussion-like symptoms. Pule, who was suffering from the flu, had an off-night, completing just six of 18 passes for 37 yards and an interception. To the signal-caller's credit, some of the attempts were dropped.
Backup up quarterback Alexander Rangle did come in and throw a 28-yard reception to Dymond McRae.
Hoover couldn't get its offense going all night, as it fell behind, 33-0, at the half. The first half saw the Tornadoes gain just two first downs and generate only 47 yards of total offense.
Hoover running back Luke Taboyoyong carried the ball eight times and gained 26 yards.
The second half was played with a running clock, as Hoover got into Mustangs' territory once.