By Joe Dargan
The football team defeated Orange Coast College 24-14 in a non-conference game at Weingart stadium on Saturday, giving the team its first win of the season.
Coming off of two consecutive winning seasons under head coach Robert “Bobby” Godinez, the Huskies were eager to rebound from a 56-21 opening game loss to Cerritos College.
“We had a rough first week, but it was a good learning experience for us. We’ve moved up a division because of our success and we knew we would be facing some new really tough football teams.,” said Godinez.
“We started off with Cerritos College and we really didn’t help ourselves out in that game; a lot of turnovers and missed tackles. We’ve addressed that this week. We have a talented group. We have to just come out and play like it.”
East Los Angeles College began the game with a lack of focus defensively.
Orange Coast sophomore quarterback Pete Mitchell was able to complete a 5-yard pass to freshman wide-receiver Dylan Laurent, followed by a handoff to freshman running back Ahmad Lewis that resulted in a 26-yard burst to the ELAC 34-yard line.
The Huskies defense was able to right the ship by forcing Orange Coast to punt after three consecutive failed plays.
ELAC’s first possession showed promise as sophomore running back Kameron Johnson took a handoff from Tran 76 yards to the Orange Coast 15-yard line, only to be thwarted by a Tran fumble on a 4-yard run.
ELAC recovered and followed with a missed 42-yard field goal attempt by freshman kicker Jaun Rangel.
On its next possession, Orange Coast went on a 12-play, 76-yard drive that was capped off with a play-action pass from Mitchell to freshman tight end Isaiah Alonzo for an 8-yard touchdown.
After a successful point-after attempt, Orange Coast led the game 7-0.
In a bid to shake things up, Godinez replaced Tran with sophomore quarterback Paul Herrera.
After no significant gains or fumbles by both teams, another change was made at the quarterback position.
With 2:52 left in the second quarter, Godinez elected to go with freshman quarterback Miguel Aguero, a recent add-on from Schurr High School.
On his first play, Aguero completed a 15-yard pass to sophomore running back David Allan after scrambling out of a broken-down pocket.
Though the possession resulted in a punt, Godinez left Aguero for the remainder of the half.
Aguero was able to put together a 15-play, 80-yard drive, resulting in a 1-yard punch-in by sophomore running back David Allen.
After a successful point after touchdown by Rangel, the game was tied 7-7 going into the half.
“We have three guys that can execute the quarterback job. Right now it was about finding spark. Miguel gave that to us so we’re sticking with him for now,” said Godinez.
Three minutes into the half, Mitchell was sacked by sophomore linebacker Garrett Rodgers on the Orange Coast 4-yard line.
Taking advantage of Orange Coast’s poor field position, freshman linebacker Carlos Alverez, who finished the game with 11 tackles and three sacks, was able to stop sophomore running back Dadrian Ellis for a 1-yard loss in the Orange Coast endzone.
The play resulted in a called Safety, giving the Huskies a 2-point lead at 9-7.
Two possessions later, sophomore defensive back Delon Collins interception led to a successful 40-yard field goal attempt by Rangle. The Huskies now led 12-7.
Two minutes later, after a 2-sack defensive possession, Aguero found sophomore wide receiver Tredious Thomas for a far 51-yard touchdown on the sideline that gave ELAC a 19-7 lead and made Rangel kick.
Orange Coast would show signs of life with a 40-yard touchdown pass to Laurent from sophomore quarterback Nathan West.
The momentum was short lived as ELAC sophomore running back Cannan Chandler rushed in for a 3-yard touchdown on the next possession.
The resulting and final score was 25-14 ELAC giving the team its first win of the season.
“The greatest take-away from this game is that you can always respond from adversity,” said Godinez.
“We sucked it up last week, but we looked ourselves in the mirror and new we had to get better. We did it in practice and we showed it in the game.”
The Huskies’ next game will be at Compton College on Saturday at 6 p.m.