his Saddleback coaching debut.
Five Mt. SAC turnovers, a four-minute offensive explosion and a stingy
fourth-quarter defense preserved the win for Saddleback, which will duel
Orange Coast College tonight at 7 at OCC.
Before that four-minute span in the third quarter, Mt. SAC was
leading, 15-7, and in control of the game.
All of a sudden, a 62-yard touchdown pass from backup quarterback Adam
Hoover to Chris Weinrauch, a fumble on the ensuing kickoff, resulting in
an 8-yard TD from Hoover to Brandon Runk and a 41-yard interception
return for a touchdown by Chad Harris, and Saddleback had a 26-15 lead.
After giving up 20 third-quarter points to Mt. SAC and clinging to a
26-23 lead, the Gaucho defense, led by Harris and linebacker Tii
Anderson, kept the Mounties off the scoreboard the entire fourth quarter
to preserve the win.
Despite the win against Mt. SAC, the Gauchos allowed 437 yards of
total offense, including 263 on the ground.
In addition, Saddleback was last in the Mission Conference in passing
offense and passing defense, so look for the Pirates to try to take
Like Saddleback, the defense of OCC also made the big play when it was
needed and Jared Flint and the offense showed signs it can take over a
game following the Pirates' 31-24 win over Fullerton.
Pirate Coach Mike Taylor sees similarities between last week's game
and tonight's game.
"I see this game coming down to the end, like our game with
Fullerton," Taylor said. "Just like any game, if we keep our mistakes
down to a minimum and we stay disciplined against Saddleback's Fly-T
offense, it should be close." Saddleback is coming off a 2-8 season
last year, including an 0-5 mark against OCC's Mission Conference,
This year's Gauchos group is similar to that of OCC's, freshman-heavy
The Gauchos lead the series, 14-9, and have played OCC each season