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, BILL ALKOFER, STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER
Visa Murrieta's Elisha Guidry and Jared Miranda weren't able to bring down JSerra's Nick Callen during the first half of Thursday's game.

JSerra earns victory that will draw attention

STAFF WRITER

MISSION VIEJO – JSerra is going to move up in two polls and just might make a debut in another.

The Lions defeated Vista Murrieta, 28-14, Thursday at Saddleback College.

Vista Murrieta (3-1) is above JSerra (3-1) in the CIF-Southern Section Division 1 top 10 poll. Vista Murrieta is ranked No. 5 there. JSerra is No. 6.

Vista Murrieta is in the California top 25 as compiled by CalHiSports.com. JSerra is not in the state top 25. JSerra is No. 7 in Orange County and with Thursday’s win is likely to move up in that top 25 poll.

JSerra junior quarterback Matt Robinson threw for 201 yards and three touchdowns. Sophomore slot back Thomas Huff caught two of the touchdown passes. Riley O’Brien caught the other, and ran for a touchdown, too. Nick Callen rushed for 100 yards on 24 carries.

O’Brien also had kickoff returns of 65 and 64 yards. Robinson, O’Brien, Callen and company got superb blocking from JSerra offensive linemen Jake Boldac, Hayden Carter, Ryan May, Jake Parks and Zelan Tupuola.

JSerra lost to Bishop Amat, 35-28 last week.

The game was delayed for several minutes in the third quarter when JSerra junior defensive back Peter Esparza suffered an injury to his right leg. His leg was immobilized and Esparza was taken by stretcher to an ambulance that him took him to a hospital.

JSerra got off to a great start. O’Brien took the opening kickoff at JSerra’s 1-yard line and returned it to the Vista Murrieta 34. Seven plays later, Robinson and slot Huff connected on a 21-yard touchdown pass for a 7-0 lead.

The Lions scored on their second possession. Again it was a Robinson-to-Huff touchdown pass, this one covering 14 yards, for a 14-0 lead.

JSerra pushed the lead to 21-0 in the second quarter when O’Brien, lined up at quarterbackon second-down-and-goal at the Broncos’ 3-yard line, took a direct snap and carried it into the end zone.

Vista Murrieta sliced the lead to 21-6 on Javelin Guidry’s 7-yard touchdown run in the third quarter. The extra-point kick was deflected away at the line of scrimmage.

O’Brien scored on a 6-yard reception later in the quarter to make it 28-6. Vista Murrieta got a touchdown and two-point conversion to create the final 28-14 score.

Vista Murrieta did not get a first down or complete a pass until the second quarter. The Lions outgained the Broncos by a large margin in total offense in the first half, 236 yards to 76.

Contact the writer: sfryer@scng.com


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