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Laris' huge stop lifts Segerstrom past Orange
SANTA ANA – Senior defensive end Danny Laris turned the momentum around quickly for the Segerstrom football team.
With Orange on the verge of scoring the tying touchdown early in the fourth quarter, Laris stepped forward on a fourth-and-goal at the 5, stuffing the ball carrier and giving the Jaguars possession.
“We were hungry, we wanted the ball back,” Laris said. “We didn’t want them to score and we played to the best of our ability.”
On the ensuing possession, Segerstrom went into its bag of tricks, pulling out a 66-yard halfback option pass from Chris Ferman to Gus Guerrero for a touchdown to help seal what turned out to be a 42-21 Golden West League victory for the Jaguars Thursday night at home.
“We just grinded it out,” Segerstrom coach Mike Maceranka said. “Our mistakes led to all of their points. We told them coming in, every time we lose to Orange, it is because of our mistakes. We had to get rid of our mistakes.
“That fourth-down stop down changed the whole game. It goes from being a tie to winning by 21.”
The Ferman to Guerrero touchdown pass gave the Jaguars a 35-21 lead. After forcing a three-and-out from Orange, Segerstrom took possession on the Orange 43. Four plays later, George Ortega went into the end zone for a 5 yard touchdown to give Segerstrom a 42-21 lead.
The Jaguars (3-2-1, 1-0) had four rushing touchdowns, two by Abel Diaz and one each from Ortega and JC Caravez. Caravez led the Jaguars with 126 rushing yards.
“We’ve been pushing mistake-free football and at the end, big play on defense, no mistakes on offense,” Maceranka said. “It is league, every game is going to be like this. We’re all about the same, so every week you have to battle.”
Orange (3-3, 0-1) opened the second half with a 24-yard touchdown pass from Jonathan Fausto to Jesus Schettino for a 21-14 lead. Those would be the last points scored for the Panters, who played without leading rusher Ty Cole (knee).
Kamron Craig filled in and led the Panthers with 122 rushing yards. Schettino and Alec Castillo had 77 and 65, respectively.
“We lost four starters in the second half,” Orange football coach Robert Pedroza said. “They’re a good football team and it just didn’t go our way. Fourth quarter they took it over.
"We have a tough group of kids. Without Ty (Cole), the kids bounced back and competed. I love this team, they're hard workers."
Both teams are on the road next week in league play. Segerstrom faces Loara at Glover Stadium and Orange visits Westminster.
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