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High School Football: One strong effort from Mustangs

Costa Mesa hangs tough with Katella, as Mustangs play without standout Crenshaw in loss.

September 14, 2013|By David Carrillo PeƱaloza
(SCOTT SMELTZER…)

COSTA MESA — Oronde Crenshaw says he isn't a one-man gang for Costa Mesa High.

During the first two games of the season, he produced six of the football team's eight touchdowns. Those scores prove otherwise.

The Mustangs played without Crenshaw on Saturday night because he's dealing with an array of injuries to his right foot. They managed to find the end zone twice, but it wasn't enough.

Costa Mesa sure missed its senior star, as it lost to Katella, 21-16, at Jim Scott Stadium. Crenshaw, in his letterman jacket and jeans, watched his team drop to 1-2.

He expects to return next week from a high ankle sprain, a bone bruise on top of his foot and a nagging Achilles' heel.

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Coach Wally Grant isn't so sure Crenshaw will be ready for the Mustangs' road contest against Los Amigos.

"They're upset with me," said Grant, who also sat standout linebacker Quinton Bell for the third straight game because of the senior's hip-flexor injury. "But you know what? This is the [nonleague portion of the schedule] and I need kids to get their work in [before Orange Coast League play].

"What I have to do is make sure [Crenshaw and Bell] are 100% healthy. When they're 100% healthy, you know, I'll play them, and that may not be until [we start league on Oct. 11]. That bye week [going into the league opener against rival Estancia] is going to be real, real important on where we're at physically. If they're not 100 percent, I'm not going to play them."

Grant said he might not have to play Crenshaw and Bell in the coming weeks. He came away impressed with the sophomore backups he used at Crenshaw and Bell's positions.

Mason Mataafu took over for Crenshaw at tailback and middle linebacker and Jonathan Brucales played outside linebacker for Bell. Mataafu rushed 16 times for 75 yards and a touchdown. The two-yard score came as time expired.

The Mustangs needed the touchdown much earlier in the fourth quarter. They went into the fourth trailing Katella, 14-10, after quarterback Oliver Ferris completed a 12-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Daniel Lawrence late in the third.

Costa Mesa didn't get to do much at the start of the fourth. The offense ran two plays before it punted. Then the Mustangs' defense spent almost eight minutes on the field trying to stop the Knights (2-0), ranked No. 5 in the CIF Southern Section Southern Division.

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