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Two-minute drill

October 12, 2009

Coach Jeff Brinkley came up short of his 200th career football victory at Newport Harbor High again.

The Sailors dropped their second straight nonleague game, falling, 24-10, at home Friday to Mira Costa of Manhattan Beach, ranked No. 2 in the CIF Southern Section Western Division poll last week.

Newport Harbor (3-2) is in a funk offensively. The Sailors have scored 17 points in their two combined losses. In the first three games of the season, the offense averaged 36.6 points per game.

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“We’ve got to be able to move the ball and flip the field a little bit,” Brinkley said. “In the first half [against Mira Costa], we played with our backs to the wall. We couldn’t get it flipped around.

“We’ll watch film and see where we broke down and hopefully we can fix a few of the problems.”

Mira Costa (3-2) shut down Newport Harbor in the first half, forcing it to punt four times and limiting it to 72 yards of total offense. After halftime, the Sailors scored on a 33-yard field goal by Dillan Freiberg and a 10-yard pass by quarterback Austin Rios to wide receiver Cecil Whiteside.

That was all Newport Harbor managed. The Sailors finished with 182 yards on offense.

“We didn’t run the ball very well,” said Brinkley, whose team has been outrushed, 398-89, by Dana Hills and Mira Costa.

 Costa Mesa High set the tone at the start of Friday’s 48-34 nonleague win over Century by aggressively going for an onside kick that fell two-yards short of the 50-yard line.

The Mustangs offense in the first half, on the other hand, did not fall short at all.

Costa Mesa’s first offensive possession took 12 plays and resulted in a field goal. After that, the Mustangs scored touchdowns on three-straight possessions, each of which took fewer than nine plays.

The Mustangs’ scoring streak ended when a ballcarrier fumbled the ball away on the first play of the second half.

 Estancia High Coach Mike Bargas said Monday he was still awaiting word from a doctor on the condition of senior tailback Alex Abalos, who was sidelined in the second quarter of Friday’s 20-10 nonleague loss to visiting Ocean View with a left-knee injury.

Abalos has 1,011 rushing yards in six games this season.

Bargas said Abalos’ knee was still stiff on Monday, prompting a visit to a doctor.

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