By Noe Ortega
With a strong start and finish, football won its first conference game against Long Beach City College 20-13 on Saturday at Weingart Stadium.
With this win, East Los Angeles College improved its record to 3-3, and are ranked third in the National-Northern Conference.
ELAC was leading by seven points with 1:24 minute left of the game, when Long Beach freshman quarterback Drake Peabody was sacked on the 24-yard line by ELAC sophomore linebacker Garrett Rogers. Peabody had three incomplete passes to end the game.
Husky sophomore quarterback Phillip Tran came on to replace freshman quarterback Paul Herrera three minutes into the fourth quarter. Tran ran four plays and gained 48 yards before tossing a 19-yard pass to sophomore wide receiver Tredious Thomas to regain the lead for the Huskies. The extra point was good to give ELAC a 17-13 lead.
With four minutes left in the fourth quarter, sophomore running back Cannan Chandler rushed to gain 64 yards. The Huskies weren’t able to get the touchdown, but freshman kicker Juan Rangel scored a 37-yard field goal to extend the Huskies’ lead by seven points.
“We have a winning mentality. If one of us falls, we pick him back up. We keep working hard, and keep moving forward. If everybody keeps their head up for all four quarters, this is the result that we’ll get,” said Chandler.
Kickers from both sides were active. Rangel scored two field goals and both extra points, and Long Beach sophomore kicker Agustin Delgadillo also scored two field goals and the extra points.
Rangel scored the first three points of the game with a 32-yard field goal that gave ELAC the lead 3-0, but in the kick off return, Rangel kicked the ball 13 yards and was recovered by the Huskies to go back on the offense.
ELAC freshman quarterback Miguel Aguero was one of the three quarterbacks that played.
Six minutes into the first quarter, Aguero connected with sophomore wide receiver Cleo Sessions Jr., who caught a 25-yard pass to score the first touchdown of the game.
The Huskies played without the support of their head coach Bobby Godinez on the sidelines. Freshman wide receiver Demonte Pressley said it motivated the team to play better and stronger without Godinez there.
In the last game, against Southwestern College, the game ended with a combination of 29 penalties. After Saturday’s game, the game ended with 31 penalties. Twenty two of them were against ELAC, costing them a total of 206 yards.
In the second and third quarters, there were 13 penalties marked against ELAC. The calls were frustrating for the players, coaches and the fans in attendance, who started to take out their frustration on the referees.
“We did really well in a lot of different phases in the game. As a coach, you’re always looking at what you can improve, and there’s definitely some things that we could improve on. The penalties were an issue, but we beat a very good team,” said assistant coach Andrew Tree.
The Huskies next game will be an away game against College of the Canyons this Saturday at 6 p.m. in another conference match.