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CdM earns rare triumph in Battle of the Bay
COSTA MESA – The streak is no more.
After losing six consecutive meetings against their city rivals, Corona del Mar can finally view things from the other side of the Battle of the Bay rivalry.
Cole Martin’s 195 rushing yards and two second-half touchdowns helped lead the 16th-ranked Sea Kings (4-0) to the 34-14 victory over 13th-ranked Newport Harbor (1-2) in front of a capacity crowd of 7,000-plus at Orange Coast College Friday night.
This is CdM's first victory over Newport Harbor since 2006. Entering Friday, the Sailors had won 17 of the last 19 meetings.
“We started wearing them down in the second half,” CdM coach Scott Meyer said. “We tied the score 14-14 and the momentum started to swing … Hoyt Crance’s intercepted, I think was huge.”
“I’m happy for our seniors. Every year it is one of our goals to win Battle of the Bay. This is a special night.”
Crance’s interception came in the third quarter and that gave CdM good field position on the Newport Harbor 32. After a three consecutive running plays moved the ball inside the 10, the Sea Kings took their first lead of the game, 21-14 on an 8-yard touchdown pass from Luke Napolitano to Bo St. Geme with five seconds remaining the quarter.
The fourth quarter would belong to Martin.
The junior running back scored on runs of 11 and 6 yards to put the finishing touches on the victory and sending the CdM student section over the railing and onto the field to celebrate the death of the streak.
“I’ve never felt better before in my life,” Martin said. “The offensive line was blocking so well and they were running down their defense. They (the Sailors) got tired in the second half and that’s when we come alive.”
Last year, the Sailors defeated the Sea Kings 27-26 and two years ago, 29-26. CdM was able to mask the pain of those two losses with CIF-SS Southern Division titles.
“This is better than a CIF title right now,” Martin said. “They’re a good defense, but we were just a better team.”
The Sailors opened the game with a workmanlike 12-play, 71-yard drive that ended with quarterback Cole Norris finding Cory Stowell in the back of the end zone for a 5-yard touchdown pass.
Aside from a second-quarter drive that ended with on a 3-yard touchdown run by Chance Siemonsma, the offense was never able to develop any consistency.
“We turned the ball over twice and that swung the whole thing,” Newport Harbor coach Jeff Brinkley said. “We were doing a pretty good playing defense, but the two turnovers hurt us.
“We never got going offensively in the second half. At the beginning of the game, we moved the ball pretty well, but we’re still not running the ball like we need to for us to have a chance.”
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