Huntington Beach, Calif. - It was a balanced approach on the offensive side of the ball that propelled Golden West to its ninth victory in the last ten meetings with Orange Coast to win the 'Battle of the Bell' for the 30th time, 41-21.
The Rustlers running back duo of Devon Jackson and Tahje Morant were the keys to success Saturday afternoon. Jackson ran for 120 yards on just 10 carries for an astounding 12 yards a carry and he found the endzone for touchdown. Morant had 15 carries for 82 yards and rushing touchdown as he averaged a very modest 5.5 yards a touch.
However, the Rustlers came out very sluggish as they found themselves down 9-0 late in the first quarter. Orange Coast kicked a field on their first drive of the game to take a 3-0 lead and then on their next possession scored on 30-yard pass to take a 9-0. Then the Rustlers woke up on both sides of the ball as they rattled off 34 unanswered points to take a commanding lead 34-9 heading into the fourth quarter. The Pirates would score twice in a minute and half to cut into the lead 34-21 but Jackson's rushing touchdown with 5:42 left in the game sealed the victory.
Quarterback Zach Lewis got the start in place of injured starter Nate Espinoza and had a stellar afternoon. Lewis was 20 of 26 for 234 yards through the air with four touchdowns as he targeted eight different receivers and connected with four different receivers for touchdowns.
Golden West will hit the road next Saturday as they travel to Riverside City College for a 6pm kickoff.