San Clemente's Brandon Reaves runs the ball for a touchdown during Friday night's nonleague game against host Huntington Beach.

Reaves does it all as San Clemente cruises


HUNTINGTON BEACH – Brandon Reaves did just about everything possible Friday to help San Clemente bounce back from a stinging loss.

The speedy senior scored on offense, defense and special teams to lead the No. 6 Tritons past host Huntington Beach, 38-13, for their first victory.

San Clemente (1-1) fell last week to Oceanside, 51-42, in a game decided in the final seconds.

Reaves returned the opening kickoff from the Oilers (1-1) 96 yards for a touchdown, scored on a 55-yard touchdown run and returned an interception 20 yards for a third score.

“It feels great to contribute on all three – special teams, defense and offense,” said Reaves, who played running back, wide receiver, cornerback and returned kicks. “It was high-intensity practice this week. We got after it all week and we just performed today. We thought we had that (Oceanside) game in the bag.”

Jack Sears threw two touchdowns and running back Austin Whitsett added 175 yards rushing on 10 carries. Outside linebacker Mario Rossi collected one of the Tritons’ four sacks and added a pass deflection and tackle for loss.

Reaves was nearly tackled early on the opening kickoff but broke free and picked up a block en route to his first kickoff return for a score at the varsity level.

Huntington Beach, ranked eighth in Division 7, drove from its 29 on its first possession to the Tritons 13. But the Oilers missed a 30-yard field goal and San Clemente pounced.

The Tritons drove 80 yards on six plays, culminated by a 7-yard touchdown pass from Sears to Chase Berman. Whitsett set up the score with a 57-yard run to the Oilers 7. A diving tackle by hustling defensive end Derek Thomas (one sack) saved the score.

San Clemente’s Austin Moore and Rossi recorded sacks on the Oilers’ ensuing possession to force a quick punt. Reaves then broke a 55-yard touchdown run on the next play as the Tritons opened a 21-0 lead with 3:23 left in the first.

Reaves finished the first quarter with 184 all-purpose yards. He intercepted a deflected pass 20 yards for a touchdown in the third quarter to make it 38-0. “I think he’s one of the most under-recruited athletes in Orange County,” San Clemente coach Jaime Ortiz said of Reaves, who finished with 238 all-purpose yards.

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