Santa Ana Valley escapes with win over Magnolia


SANTA ANA- Santa Ana Valley turned the ball over three times in the second half of its Orange League matchup with Magnolia on Friday night, giving the Sentinels an opportunity to tie the score in the fourth quarter.

With first-and-goal from the Falcons 8-yard line and just under a minute remaining, the Santa Ana Valley defense came up with a big stop, and the Falcons escaped with a 21-14 victory.

Santa Ana Valley (4-3, 2-0) scored all of its points in the first half. All three of its touchdowns came on runs by senior running back Chris Hernandez.

The Falcons stayed with the ground attack pretty much the entire night, as Hernandez carried the ball 30 times for 175 yards.

But two interceptions and two fumbles by Santa Ana Valley helped Magnolia (0-7, 0-2) score 14 points and keep the game close.

Falcons quarterback Sherman Thomas was knocked out of the game for a while with what appeared to be a shoulder injury, but he returned in the fourth quarter.

In the first quarter, Thomas dropped back to pass from his own 1-yard line. While trying to avoid a sack, he threw the ball up and a Sentinels defender came down with it and scored a touchdown.

In the third quarter, Magnolia junior running back Akir Lingham scored on a 30-yard run, just one play after the Sentinels defense recovered a fumble.

But Magnolia couldn’t find way into the end zone again, allowing Santa Ana Valley to leave with the victory.

Next week Magnolia travels to Century while Santa Ana Valley hosts Katella.

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