Prep Impressions: Sept. 13, 2018

Norte Vista played again without leading rusher Chris Melesio but still handled Corona, 49-22, in Week 4.

The Corona-Norte Vista Week 4 varsity football game on Thursday, Sept. 13, 2018, had us thinking that the Panthers had a shot until we saw them with the football.

For Corona, an inability to run the ball or protect its quarterback led to quick 3-and-outs in the first quarter and a bunch of bad mistakes. Also, Panthers assistant coaches openly disagreeing at halftime about personnel groupings, one wanting to try something new and accusing the other of usimg ‘the same ol’ players over and over’.

Corona head coach Ron Gueringer said, “(Norte Vista) did a great job. They kicked out butt. Let’s give them credit. They did a good job they came downhill and beat us up. We’re not a big, physical football team and we have a lot of young players and so we did the best we could and hats off to them. They did a great job. They did some things defensively to slow us down early and we got in a hole and it was hard to get out of it. They built a lot of momentum and so let’s give them credit. Andy Martinez does a great job as their defensive coordinator and Ken (Batdorf)’s guys did a great job running the ball. Trying to install the culture; We’re going one step at a time. We’ve got a lot of young guys and they’re getting experience, and hopefully that experience will be worthwhile for them. We think we’re going to turn the corner. It may not be this year because we have a lot of injuries. We’ve lost like 12 players in the last few week since the season started – it’s been a tough deal – but again we’re not going to take anything away from Norte Vista. They did a great job and we have to give them credit. We get a bye week and then we get the pleasure of playing in the second toughest league in Southern California. We’ll have fun with it and do what we can do and try to keep it positive. Re: senior QB Xavier Reyero: I think he played well at times but just like everything else we need to protect him, and we didn’t do a great job of protecting him tonight so he had people on him and when you have people on you, you sometimes make the wrong decisions. Overall, he was a trooper and took a lot of beatings, took a lot of late hits but it is what it is. We got to be able to run the ball and unfortunately with the young line and the guys we do have, movement is not a product of their experience right now so we have trouble versus quickness and they put a quick group in front of us tonight and played us hard.”

For Norte Vista, it was an easier victory than the Braves thought it would be, especially for their second game without senior Chris Melesio, who remains sidelined by a knee injury. A group of willing and talented runners has emerged to carry the load, however, and the team looks deeper and perhaps more dangerous than before the season.

Norte Vista head coach Ken Batdorf said, “We’re playing three-or-four guys at tailback but the big issue for us is that Chris (Melesio) lets the other guys play defense, and our defense is pretty good. So we got guys getting tired running the ball, but they have to, so we have to get in better shape and Chris has to get healthy. Those are our two big things. We played well but we can still play better. We had some special teams breakdowns, we had some bad personal fouls that gave them a touchdown at the end of the first half so we could still do better. We weren’t really going to use (Josef Luckey) at all on offense until Chris got hurt. We also like him at fullback because he is fast. He played running back when he played at Valencia HS, and so it’s one of those deals where let’s throw him in there because he looks pretty good in practice. The Monday after Chris got hurt I was like, “(Luckey) looks pretty good!” so we saw that he could so well and we’re pleased with that. But he’s just one of the four guys, and we have a freshman, a sophomore, a junior and a senior. We’re young in that way so we just have to learn not to make dumb mistakes. We’re starting 16 underclassmen so we gotta keep working, we gotta keep weight lifting and keep conditioning. We did put in some pass plays and then we realized we were controlling the line of scrimmage so just keep running the ball. I was pleased with how the passes turned out but you never know. We want to run enough sets in pass plays to keep people honest at least and we did that tonight.”

Corona – 0 – 14 – 0 – 8 — 22
Norte Vista – 14 – 21 – 14 – 0 — 49
First quarter
N – Hazem 7 run (Aguilar kick), 4:02
N – Luckey 30 run (Aquilar kick), 2:11
Second quarter
N – Allain 2 run (Aguilar kick), 11:56
N – Luckey 40 run (Aguilar kick), 8:56
C – Gibson 19 pass from Reyero (run failed), 3:21
N – Hazem 34 pass from Corey (Aguilar kick), 1:29
C – Sheffield 25 pass from Reyero (Sheffield pass from Reyero), 0:15
Third quarter
N – Luckey 22 run (Aguilar kick), 10:26
N – Allain 12 run (Aguilar kick), 1:41
Fourth quarter
C – Gibson 10 pass from Reyero (Gibson pass from Reyero), 0:19
Individual statistics
Rushing – Corona: Bartlett 9-17, Sheffield 1-6, Minnieweather 1-1, Gibson 1-0, Reyero 5-(minus-35); Norte Vista: Luckey 9-128, Allain 17-109, Hazem 11-75, Koshmerl 9-41, Gonzalez 5-27, Vasquez 1-5, Patino 1-3.
Passing – Corona: Reyero 27-41-0-249; Norte Vista: Corey 3-3-0-75.
Receiving – Corona: Gibson 11-118, 9-94, Klepach 2-30, Bartlett 4-7, Minnieweather 1-5; Norte Vista: Hazem 1-34, J.Gonzalez 1-32, S.Gonzalez 1-9.

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