After a high-scoring Week 1 victory, CV football is focused on the Titans, who beat them badly last year.
By Brandon HENSLEY
If you drafted Brian Gadsby in your high school fantasy football league that doesn’t exist, then congratulations – you earned a ton of theoretical points and probably won your league last week, which, again, isn’t a real thing.
What was very real for the Crescenta Valley High Falcons was Gadsby’s stellar play at quarterback last Friday. In the season-opening 54-20 win at Verdugo Hills, the junior torched the Dons, the reigning East Valley League champions, to the tune of 199 yards and six (six!) touchdown passes.
It was almost as impressive as Peyton Manning’s opening-night performance for the Denver Broncos (Manning tied an NFL record with seven TD throws against the Ravens).
So, the first stat of the season that jumps out is this: Gadsby’s six passing TDs were two more than Crescenta Valley had all of last season.
Yep, the whole 2012 season.
“It’s pretty cool knowing that,” Gadsby said. “But then again, our offense this year is, I think, better than last year. Our receivers and our backups are pretty good, so it helps me. I know that all I need to do is throw it up and they’ll come up with it.”
Two touchdown catches each for Bostin Lakin and Connor Van Ginkel, and one apiece for Chase Walker and Ben Rees means all the talk about how versatile the offense was going to be turned out to be true, at least for a game.
“It was a great job of balance, so we were really happy with that,” said Head Coach Paul Schilling.
CV is 1-0 heading into tonight’s home game vs. the San Marino Titans, a team that beat CV 27-7 early last year. The Titans won their opener over Duarte 39-20. Running back Andrew Ferraco rushed for 215 yards and two scores on 25 carries. In total, San Marino rushed for 471 total yards, proving it can also put up big numbers.
“There’s definitely guys that want to beat them, and hopefully beat them bad,” said Gadbsy, who was on the junior varsity team at the time last year. “But we know they’re a good team.”
Gadsby actually said the Titans are a mirror image of his team on both sides of the ball, and that, “We had a lot of practice against them by just playing against ourselves.”
He said that in going over the video, the Titans play four linebackers and four down linemen. When a team has eight men in the box that usually means it’s playing the run, which could open big-play passing opportunities for Gadsby and his receivers.
“We know how their [defense] is going to line up,” Schilling said. “They’re not going to do anything crazy or tricky, so we just have to execute.”
Last week, CV forced four turnovers including interceptions by Kevin Hello and Jordan LoBianco. This week, Schilling said San Marino does well to hide their tendencies on offense, so CV has to be super focused on not getting fooled.
“They could be one of the best, if not the best, coached teams we play,” he said. “They’re very balanced.”
Not Good Enough?
Despite the final score against Verdugo Hills, Schilling said Gadbsy missed some of his throws, especially early on. He finished completing 15 of 27 passes.
“His numbers could have been crazy. He’s that good,” Shilling said.
It didn’t help that Connor Van Ginkel dropped a sure touchdown on a streak route in the end zone, and then later dropped a diving attempt on a post pattern. Gadsby said he razzed his friend a little bit after the game, but knew Van Ginkel, who finished with four catches and 72 yards, was already upset at himself.
Backup quarterback Joe Torres came on in the second half and was four-of-eight passing for 45 yards. Running back Jonathan Jun ran for 81 yards and picked 19 yards receiving. Freshman place kicker Alex Atanackovic converted six of his seven extra-point attempts.
Gadsby, the Improviser
At one point in last week’s game, Gadsby ran to the right and met a Verdugo Hills defender. As he was spun around and about to be tackled, he lateraled a pass to a receiver for a nice gain. Those are the kinds of gusty plays that Schilling doesn’t know how to feel about.
“He might throw it behind the back one time and you want to yell at him but it might but be the winning touchdown,” Schilling said. “It might be an interception going the other way, too, but that’s Brian.”
The Falcons are one of four teams to be 1-0 in the Pacific League (league games for CV start Sept. 27 against Pasadena). The Muir Mustangs and Hoover Tornadoes have both played two games, and both are 1-1. Pasadena and Burroughs are the two teams to drop their openers.