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El Modena's quick strikes too much for Western

CONTRIBUTING WRITER

ANAHEIM - El Modena’s Frankie Islas returned a punt 47 yards for a touchdown and Christian Lopez had a 56-yard interception return for a touchdown to turn close contest against Western into a 34-7 rout Thursday in a nonleague game at Western High.

The Vanguards (3-0) played without injured running back Kenneth Lamb (knee). Replacement Dillon Keefe, a 6-1, 185-pound junior, was El Modena’s driving force with 70 yards on 18 carries, including a 2-yard touchdown run in the third period.

El Modena led, 10-7, at halftime and extended it to 13-7 on Angel DeRosas’ 32-yard field goal with 6:07 left in the third period.

The Vanguards capitalized on a break when they took over at the Western 2 following a low snap to the punter on fourth down. Keefe scored on first down and El Modena’s advantage expanded to 17-7.

El Modena forced Western (1-2) to punt and Islas returned it for a touchdown for a 27-7 lead.

Lopez’s interception return came with 5:37 remaining in the fourth period to put El Modena up, 34-7.

Western played without quarterback Jacob Adams, who is dealing with a rib injury. The Pioneers struggled offensively, gaining 40 yards rushing and 45 passing. Quarterback Abraham Bojorquez completed 8 of 17 with two interceptions.

El Modena took advantage of excellent field position to put together a 45-yard touchdown drive on 11 plays on its opening possession. Keefe accounted for 33 yards, including 6 on fourth-and-4 from the Western 26. Andrew Carvajal scored from the 1 with 5:26 remaining in the first period.

Angel DeRosas’ 30-yard field goal with 1:15 left in the first increased El Modena’s lead to 10-0.

Western scored its sole touchdown on a 23-yard pass from Bojorquez to tight end Enrique Lopez, who made a leaping catch surrounded by three defenders in the end zone with 4:26 left in the first half.


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