Errors doom Estancia

Turnovers and miscues lead to Eagles losing its second straight game, as University grabs first win of year Thursday night.

September 23, 2010|By David Carrillo PeƱaloza,
(Kent Treptow / Daily…)

IRVINE — Estancia High Coach Mike Bargas said his football team has to clean up the mess.

The offensive side did not help the Eagles Thursday night as they lost to University, 13-6, suffering their second straight loss.

Estancia's defense has done its job during the skid, while the offense has only mustered 19 points.

The Eagles (1-2) went scoreless in the final three quarters of the nonleague game at Irvine High. Out of the last eight quarters, opponents have shut out Estancia five times.

Despite turning the ball over twice in the final 7 minutes, 3 seconds of the game, Estancia's defense gave its offense a shot at the end to come from behind and win.

Defensive lineman Juan Mejia was a big reason for the late opportunity. He was everywhere, helping Estancia hold University's run game to a measly 16 yards on 19 carries before leaving the game with three minutes left to play with an ankle injury.


Estancia forced University to punt with 2:09 remaining. Eleven seconds later, the Eagles offense took over on its nine.

They were 91 yards away from keeping the Trojans winless in their first three games, all at home.

University prevailed for the first time, getting over the hump for its longtime coach, Mark Cunningham, who is not with the team because he is fighting cancer.

The Eagles gained only two first downs on their final possession, one due to a pass interference call on University.

The final four passes for the Eagles fell incomplete. No receiver stood a chance at making a catch.

The passing game has been a weakness at Estancia since Bargas took over three years ago.

"We were off target a little bit," said Bargas after seeing Jonathan Diego complete nine of 23 passes for 65 yards and throw an interception.

The pick came at the wrong time for the Eagles, who were on their 25-yard line. On third-and-long, defensive back Joe Teresi intercepted the pass on the 45 and the Trojans took over in Estancia territory with 3:59 to go.

Three minutes earlier, Estancia muffed a punt near midfield.

"The punt hurt us," Bargas said. "Just like last week, [when we lost at home to Buena Park, 21-13], we made mistakes and it's hard to recover from that kind of stuff."

A University turnover inside its own 20-yard in the opening quarter led to the Eagles' lone score.

Defensive lineman Alipa Peters forced running back Sean Martin to fumble and the Eagles recovered on the 15. Estancia needed eight plays and four minutes to get into the end zone.

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