Prep Impressions: Week 9

I covered the Rialto Carter-San Bernardino San Gorgonio varsity football game for The Press-Enterprise and HSGametime.com on Friday, Nov. 1, 2013, and came away thinking the Spartans have me eating a whole bunch of crow.

I picked San Gorgonio to finish fourth in the San Andreas League for HSGametime.com in August. That was dumb. The Spartans are far and away the best team in the SAL, having won by a cumulative total of 174-0 in their last three games after dispatching with Rialto Carter, 59-0, on Friday, Nov. 1, 2013.

San Gorgonio runs a version of the spread option offense with QB Tahir Rasheed-Mills making the plays. He’s an outstanding athlete — as dynamic as any in the Inland Area this season — and can quite literally do it all.

He ran for two TDs, passed for another and even had a touchdown reception vs. Carter. He was practically sensational. What he did in the second quarter (three different TDs on three consecutive drives) was perhaps historical.

His play was so good that it reminded me a little of former Corona Centennial QB Michael Eubank, FOMB’s inaugural Player of the Year, who also caught one receiving TD in his prep career. He’s now a sophomore at Arizona State.

The Spartans, under coach Ron Gueringer, actually look a little like Corona Centennial circa 2010, with Rasheed-Mills emulating Eubank as he nears his second consecutive 1,000-yard rushing, 1,000-yard passing season.

Versus Carter — a good defensive team in recent seasons — the Spartans spread it out and ran the ball. This forced the Lions into the personnel mismatches and coverage lapses that gave Rasheed-Mills open targets at which to throw.

He gained nearly 200 yards rushing and had 130 passing to go with a 29-yard touchdown catch. That’s more than 350 total yards. That’s impressive.

Rialto Carter coach Alex Pierce:
“We had way too many turnovers. We had bad snaps. We’d have a good drive, have a good play going then we’d fumble. You can’t turn the ball over six times and expect to beat these guys. Field position was good for them. I think we punted the ball about 10 yards every time out. You can’t do that against good teams. We need to mature and when something bad happens we need to cut it loose and get to the next play. It seems like it’s been snowballing throughout this whole year. Something bad happens and it’s the same thing that happened against (Eisenhower). If one bad thing happens then another bad thing and another bad thing instead of cutting loose and starting fresh.”

San Gorgonio coach Ron Gueringer:
“We came out the first couple of series and it was tough. I can’t tell you how well we played on defense tonight. We just got guys that are weapons. Every running back made plays. Every wide receiver made plays, and then we got rollin’ and you know — it got away. We didn’t expect to score like this tonight. Coach Pierce is a class guy and Carter is a class program. And honestly, I hated to see a score like this tonight. I’m happy for my kids. They played super well. And we can’t deny that. You try to not get caught up in the euphoria of what’s going on. You just got to stay business-like. Coach Pierce is a good friend of mine and I have nothing but respect for the Carter program. We took a tough one there last year and things have kind of turned around this year. We’ve risen to the occasion. There were a lot of questions about who we were. People kept questioning — we have people picking us fourth before the regular season — and it was crazy, but at the same time we knew how good we were. We just had to put some things together.”

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