Prep Preview: Citrus Hill at Arlington

I’m covering the Perris Citrus Hill-Riverside Arlington varsity football game tonight, Friday, Sept. 11, 2015, for The Press-Enterprise, HSGametime.pe.com and @pecom_preps.

The best part of this assignment is the chance to see how Citrus Hill responds to its first loss of the season.

CitrusHillLOGOTHE LOW DOWN:
The Hawks (1-1 overall) took it on the beak last week vs. Murrieta Valley, losing by their largest margin (23 points, 44-21) in nine seasons. QB Elijah Matthews was picked off and fumbled once, and the usually stout defense was unable to stop Murrieta Valley’s freshman quarterback, Hank Bachmeier, from tossing four TDs. Matthews taking better care of the ball will keep drives alive, and take pressure off a retooling defense.

ArlingtonLOGOThe Lions (1-0 overall) began the Rich Lunsford era with a 52-7 victory over Riverside La Sierra. Senior QB Isaiah Morgan and senior RB Asante Coleman combined for more than 200 rushing yards and five TDs for Arlington, which jumped to a 35-0 lead at the end of the first quarter. Such a fast start can keep weaknesses hidden, but only for so long against well-coached opponents. The Morgan-Coleman tandem must continue to churn yards and produce points.

THE KEY PLAYERS:
Citrus Hill
— QB Elijah Matthews (Sr., 5-foot-10, 175 pounds); RB Devin Floyd (Sr., 5-8, 180); WR DaQuan Blackwell (Sr., 6-2, 190); LB/RB Dumar Fisher (Sr., 5-8, 180); DB Skyler Thomas (Sr., 5-11, 180); De Aljenon Washington (Sr., 6-2, 235).

Arlington — QB Isaiah Morgan (Sr., 6-foot-1, 198 pounds); RB Asante Coleman (Sr., 5-8, 184); C Nate Mitchell (Sr., 6-4, 285); T Mark Lingurar (Sr., 6-2, 280); T DeAundra Boyd (Jr., 6-4, 285); MLB/TE Daren Johnson (Sr., 6-2, 200).

THE DIFFERENCE:
It’s still so early in the season this remains a tough game to call. Citrus Hill may be flawed in pass defense but Arlington isn’t equipped to fatally exploit those flaws.

THE FINAL SCORE:
Citrus Hill 38, Arlington 34

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