GLENDALE — After playing his worst statistical game of the season last week, Crescenta Valley High football's Brian Gadsby was eager to return to form.
Hoover realized that was trouble.
The Falcons quarterback completed 12 of 17 passes for 263 yards, five touchdowns and an interception in the first half and was pulled, along with the rest of the starters, in the second half that included a running clock from start to finish. Gadsby led his side to a 39-point lead at halftime and Crescenta Valley cruised to a convincing 56-16 Pacific League win Friday night at Moyse Field.
“We had to get back in the mojo of Falcon football, last week was probably our worst game all season — probably the worst game we’re going to play all season,” said Gadsby, who was 12 of 23 for 95 yards, two interceptions and one touchdown in a 27-7 win over Glendale last week. “This week we started out great and just kept it flowing and just all around were a good football team tonight. Hoover competed, but we just came out on top and it was a good win.”
CV's defense forced Hoover into a three-and-out on the first drive of the game to get ball into Gadsby's hands quickly. The junior completed all three of his passes on his first drive and capped it with a 12-yard touchdown to Ben Rees 2:44 into the contest.
After Hoover failed on three straight possessions, Gadsby finished another four-yard touchdown drive with a 16-yard strike to Rees with 4:22 to play in the first quarter. Rees finished with five catches for 50 yards and two touchdowns.
“They’re having a really strong year with the high-powered offense they have, good quarterback, good receivers,” Hoover first-year Coach Matt Andersen said. “We were just outmatched again.”
In his first game back since suffering an injury early in the season, CV wider receiver Connor Van Ginkel (136 yards on three catches) also caught two touchdowns in the first half (33 and 71 yards) from Gadsby. Chase Walker (four catches for 77 yards) also had a 33-yard scoring reception in helping the Falcons build a 49-10 lead by halftime. CV's two other first-half scores came on a 97-yard kickoff return from Jordan Lobianco and a 59-yard pick six from Kevin Hello 11 seconds before the break.
“It’s about being focused every game because you can’t say you’re going to turn it on today and then turn it off,” said CV Coach Paul Schilling, whose team improved to 7-1, 4-1 in league. “We were hoping last week our starters wouldn’t play a second half but they gave us a game. We were happy we came out to play tonight.”
Hoover (2-6, 0-5) showed some big-play ability of its own. Tornadoes quarterback Se Jun Kim threw three passes of more than 25 yards in the game. A 56-yard pass to Andres Perez set up a 27-yard field goal for the wide receiver and kicker with 24 seconds left in the first, bringing Hoover to within 14-3.
Kim (eight of 26, 201 yards, two touchdowns, one interception) also threw a 71-yard touchdown to Alvin Kim with 5:50 left in the second quarter, which made it 35-10.
While the Falcons' offense was shut out in the second half when they pulled their starters, their special teams added another touchdown when Robby Benson took the opening second-half kickoff 93 yards.
With a running clock through the entire second half, Hoover managed to score on the final play of the game. With three seconds left, the Tornadoes called a timeout and Kim lobbed a four-yard touchdown pass to Perez, who also had an interception on defense, to end the game.
CV will look to strengthen its league title hopes going when it hosts Muir next Friday night at Moyse Field.
“They’re really good, very physical but we’ll be in the silo getting ready for them,” Schilling said of the Mustangs. “We’ll be prepared. We’re ready to work really hard.”
Said Gadsby: “It’s basically the battle for league. It’s going to be one hell of a game and there’s no doubt it’s going to be an offensive battle. … We’re just going to have to prepare, we can’t mess around all week.”
Perez finished with four catches for 91 yards for Hoover.