Capo Valley clinches share of title as defense dominates again


SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO – Capistrano Valley clinched at least a share of the Sea View League title Friday by using its dominant defense to beat Aliso Niguel, 43-10, at Capistrano Valley High.

The Cougars, who haven't won a league title since 2012, can win the title outright with a victory in their final league game, against Dana Hills on Nov. 4.

Coach Ernie Bucher refused to acknowledge the league championship.

“We aren’t league champs until we beat Dana Hills, baby,” Bucher said.

The Cougars (8-1, 3-0) held Aliso to just 37 yards rushing and 226 yards of total offense. Entering the game, Capo Valley had allowed just over seven points per game. Defensive end Zach Ritner had three sacks for the Cougars.

“I really liked the way Zach Ritner played," Bucher said. "The defense was consistent as always. It’s been nine games of this.”

The Cougars passing attack came to play as well. Quarterbacks Kevin Brown and Nathan Manning threw for 210 and 177 yards, respectively, and combined for three touchdowns through the air.

Capo began the onslaught with a 5-yard touchdown run by Brock Ricci to put the Cougars ahead 8-0.

After an Aliso field goal, Brown completed a 7-yard touchdown pass to Matt Blethen to give Capo a 15-3 lead.

Brown scored on a 7-yard run to give Capo a 22-3 lead at halftime.

After halftime, Kian Assarpour scored on a 5-yard run to put Capo ahead 29-3. Manning threw a pair of touchdowns in the fourth quarter to put the game away.

Aliso Niguel (2-6, 0-2) struggled to move the ball offensively. Quarterback Nate Sorensen completed 15 of 32 passes for 124 yards. Tyler Jones led the Wolverine receivers with 9 receptions for 68 yards.

Kyle Robertson completed a 21-yard touchdown pass to Ethan Sellona for the Wolverines’ lone touchdown.

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