Football finishes promising season tied for last place

by Dan Gudino

 

The 2015 season for the football team ended on a seven-game losing streak and with a 2-8 record.

Before the season ELAC brought in first year Head Coach Eric Marty to change a struggling program to replace ex-head coach Steven Mojarro, who went 11-19 in three seasons.

Marty and the Huskies in 2015 had a down year, not being able to match the three-win season of 2014.

The season opener against Glendale City College showed what the season would be in every single loss except for the loss against Victor Valley College.

ELAC had the lead into the second half or was within eight points in all losses.

The close back-and-forth battle between the Huskies and GCC went late into the fourth quarter, when ELAC lost the lead in the final minute of play.

The GCC game displayed a Huskies team that would come up short in all but one loss.

“I give this season a C plus grade. The first thing is we’re not scared of anyone. We’ve never been in a game we can’t win. Maybe we’ve been a little short handed or needed a little more firepower on either side of the ball (defense and offense), but we’ve been right there, so that’s the encouraging thing,” said Marty.

ELAC on the season lost by a average margin of only 10 points, which is a positive compared to the average margin of loss by 26 points in 2014.

“We’ll look at next year and I don’t care who we play. We know we can go toe-to-toe with anybody. It’s about improving the group that comes back. It’s about adding great players coming in. Hopefully word gets out. As much as we wished our record was flipped (2-8 to 8-2), we’re so competitive, but our record did not reflect that,” Marty added.

Key injuries to key starting players on offense held the Huskies back in the run game. Freshman William Tanner Rose from Clark High School in Kentucky played five games before he broke his clavicle in his left shoulder and was out for the season.

Rose served as a great run blocker and was a security blanket in the pass game.

Rose caught the winning touchdown pass in the Santa Barbara game with 30 seconds left in the game for the first victory of the season.

Another injury was to starting freshman running back out of Crenshaw High School, Shaquille Shelton.

He missed three games with a high right ankle sprain. Shelton with the sprained ankle never fully recovered, missing the last game of the season.

“We need to come together, be more of a unit. The mental toughness is a major role in football, so if we tighten up those things we’ll be all right,” Shelton said

The run game was nonexistent without Shelton, who led the team with only 327 yards rushing.

ELAC finished in a three-way tie for last place (1-6), in the American Mountain Conference, tied with San Diego Mesa and El Camino Compton Center College.

“I’m going to radically change the way I do things. Now it’s year two in East L.A. We had a good plan, but it needs to be revised and tweaked. That’s the exciting part. I have so much love for these kids and game. I want to see these guys be successful,” Marty said.

ELAC’s last victory was Sept. 26 a win at home against El Camino Comton Center College, 37-12.

The playoffs start without ELAC. The Huskies have not appeared in the playoffs since 2011.

The Southern California championship game is held Nov. 28 and the State title game Dec. 12.

To read previous recaps on this season’s football games, go to elaccampusnews.com.

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