LA HABRA 35, OAKS CHRISTIAN 28
WESTLAKE VILLAGE – Not even torrential traffic on the 101 freeway could stop La Habra in its quest for another section title Friday night.
Despite being stiff and a bit restless after a long bus ride, the Highlanders made no excuses and knocked off Oaks Christian, 35-28, in the first round of the CIF-SS Division 2 playoffs.
“That was a great football game,” La Habra coach Frank Mazzota said.
The Lions were able to strike first with Matt Corral finding Colby Parkinson over the middle for the game’s first touchdown. The senior had two touchdowns but Oaks Christian did not have an answer for running back Madison Wheeler.
Wheeler had 35 carries for 215 yards, including 130 yards in the first half. Used primarily as a safety through most of the regular season, Wheeler ran downhill the entire night. His 1-yard carry tied the game with 2:15 left in the second.
“Tonight they just came out and played like the tougher team tonight,” Lions coach Hank Benkert said.
In the fourth quarter, after Mycah Pittman caught a tipped pass to tie the score at 21-21, Highlanders QB Zack Fogel found Derrick Corso in the end zone to tie the game at 28-28 with 6:32 left in the game and then to Prince Ross for the go-ahead TD.
“We opened it up and they couldn't handle us,” Corso said.
Corso sealed the deal with his second pick of the game with 45.2 seconds left as La Habra advanced to the Southern Section quarterfinals.