LA CAÑADA — Coming off a bye week, the La Cañada High football team couldn’t catch any breaks on offense against San Marino.
The Spartans struggled to string together long runs and make catches, and it paid for it.
San Marino shut out La Cañada, 49-0, in the Spartans Rio Hondo League opener at home Friday night.
The Spartans (1-6) had six three-and-outs on 11 drives. Two other possessions ended in interceptions, while two more were the result of turnovers on downs.
“Offensively, we just weren’t clicking,” Spartans coach Jason Sarceda said. “Our guys couldn’t get our blocking game right, our running didn’t kick off at all ... It was a brutal game, offensively, for us.”
The Spartans ground game amassed 22 yards, while quarterback Matt Bromley had four completions in 13 passes for 41 yards and two interceptions. Receiver Dezin Delgatty caught three passes for 38 yards for the Spartans.
San Marino running back Beau Hobbie, meanwhile, tormented the La Cañada defense with four touchdowns in the first half — three of which came in the first quarter. He finished with 299 yards in 21 carries and five touchdowns.
Despite that, Sarceda said the Spartans followed the defensive game plan as prepared for in practices.
“I’m happy with the defensive performance, even though we got 49 points scored on us,” Sarceda said. “I thought we stayed competitive in the game. We had bad turnovers, bad situations that we put ourselves in, but [we] just kept on competing with it and I thought we had a good game plan.
“I know we were frustrating them at some points, but, again, the score is what it is.”
Hobbie put the Titans (6-1-1, 2-0) in great field position after gaining 66 yards in his first carry of the night to land on the Spartans’ 8-yard line. He scored five plays later on a five-yard run for a 7-0 San Marino lead early in the first.
La Cañada muffed the ensuing kickoff return that handed possession back to San Marino on the Spartans’ 37. Hobbie scored four plays later for a 14-0 lead and he had amassed triple-digit yards by the time he ran home his second touchdown with 8:14 left in the first.
The Spartans went three-and-out on their first possession before the Titans had the same scenario on their next drive.
“We got off to a pretty slow start,” San Marino coach Mike Hobbie said. “We’ve punted more in the first half than we’ve punted in the last several games.
“We had too many penalties. I don’t know how focused we were coming in to this game. I was worried about it. Usually, jumping offside and things like that is a lack of focus — losing our edge. We have to play better than that.”
La Cañada punted again after three plays on its second drive, and, in all, punted three times and had three separate three-and-outs on six possessions. It had three three-and-outs on four possessions in the second half.
After La Cañada’s Bromley threw an interception with 55.6 left in the first, San Marino and its running back scored three plays later from 15 yards out to make it a 21-0 lead with half a minute left in the quarter.
“What really needs to happen is I need to get better on my pre-snap reads so I can have a better understanding of what I’m going to do before,” said Bromley on his offense’s struggles. “And I think our linemen need to work on the little things. They’ve been doing great all season and they’ve really improved since the last, but there’s just the little things like working up the backers better.
“We really tried to expose the linebackers with our game plan this week, but it just didn’t pan out the way we wanted to.”
A short punt put the Titans 30 yards away from scoring, and on their first play of the drive, Hobbie ran in and grabbed his fourth touchdown for a 28-0 lead with 8:12 left in the first half.
The Titans tallied another touchdown on a 13-yard quarterback sneak with 1:19 left in the half to make it 35-0.
Hobbie added his fifth touchdown to make it 42-0 with 48 seconds gone in the second half after the Spartans muffed the Titans’ kickoff return.