Corona del Mar's Cameron Kormos takes off on a touchdown run ahead of Trabuco Hills' Michael O'Malley during the first half of Friday's game. Corona del Mar was playing Trabuco Hills in a nonleague football game at Estancia High School on Friday. (Photo by Bill Alkofer, Orange County Register/SCNG)

CdM provides chemistry lesson, routs Trabuco Hills


COSTA MESA – The play was as telling as it was, in the grand scheme of things, meaningless. Early in the second quarter, Corona del Mar having already established a 35-point lead over Trabuco Hills, quarterback Chase Garbers was flushed out of the pocket.

His favorite receiver, Tae Le, hovered by the sideline, his route broken and over. Almost.

Garbers, rolling back to the sideline, waved his arm, which was evidently as fine a way of communicating as sitting down and having a conversation, because the next second Le was running a different route and Garbers was hitting him in stride for yet another completion.

While the play wasn’t much of a difference-maker in determining the result of the game, it was that type of chemistry between the quarterback and receiver that led CdM to a 55-14 win over Trabuco (2-4) at Estancia High School on Friday night.

Four times the two would hook up for touchdowns, all in a 48-point first half in which Garbers threw for 315 yards and five touchdowns, 122 of those yards to Le.

“It’s special,” CdM (4-1) coach Dan O’Shea said of the connection between Garbers and Le. “It’s really rare. You can’t coach it.”

But as the coach, he understands how to make use of it. Now at the season’s midpoint, Le has caught 10 touchdowns and has 636 receiving yards, and Garbers has thrown 16 touchdowns without an interception.

“Just the grinding in the offseason,” said Garbers of his connection with Le, who gave up basketball to concentrate solely on football and becoming a true wide receiver. “Working with him over last year, the summer, the offseason, it helped get our timing down. It’s just instinctual for both of us.”

And it was Garbers to Le early. On the fourth play from scrimmage, Garbers, a California recruit, found Le for a 49-yard touchdown.

Garbers’ next pass went 73 yards to Cameron Kormos for a score, and after a successful onside kick, the quarterback hit Le again for a 4-yard touchdown. Four minutes had barely expired and CdM was up 20-0, averaging more than two points per play.

“We were clean tonight,” O’Shea said. “We were really clean and we threw well. We just caught lightning in a bottle for a few series there.”

A few – meaning the first seven, which all resulted in Sea King touchdowns.

“We’ve never done that,” O’Shea said. “And (Trabuco), that’s a very good football team. We feel fortunate, we were just able to make some plays.”

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