Falcons lose main wide receiver Lutynski to leg injury in last week’s win that will put him out for a month.
By Brandon HENSLEY
It seems cruel and unfair that tonight’s game for the Crescenta Valley High football team is Senior Recognition Night. That’s because one of the Falcons’ seniors and best offensive weapons won’t be suiting up; not tonight, and most likely not for the entire month of October.
Wide receiver Jack Lutynski injured his left knee in CV’s win over Pasadena on Sept. 28 at Glendale High School. It came in the third quarter on a holding play against CV during a 16-yard run by quarterback Joe Torres. Lutynski fell to the ground and had to be helped off. His leg was wrapped and he was with crutches on the sideline the rest of the game.
On Tuesday, CV Coach Paul Schilling said Lutynski had a “small tear” in his left Medial Collaterial ligament (MCL).
“He should be back for the Arcadia game and hopefully for the playoffs if we make it,” he said.
But the Arcadia game, the last of the regular season, isn’t until Nov. 2. That means the Falcons will be without Lutynski for four games this month.
The go-to-guy on offense, Lutynski has 20 catches for 261 yards this season, according to maxpreps.com.
“The thing about our team is there are so many weapons,” said Torres. “[Jack is] our big weapon. On third-and-long, he’s the guy you have to go to.”
CV was holding on to a 14-8 lead when Lutynski was injured. The Falcons won the game 17-14 behind solid defense, particularly from defensive back Chad Eggertson (two sacks), and Torres, who guided a mistake-free offense to just enough points. He played the entire game because the other starting quarterback Ben Rees was sick. It was the first time this season that either player took every snap.
Torres was seven-of-11 passing for 71 yards, but by now it’s clear whether he or Rees is in, the passing offense isn’t going to put up gaudy numbers. CV is going to rely on defense and the quarterback executing a game plan that reads more like a boat captain’s orders: steady as she goes.
Running back William Wang scored on a 30-yard run less than a minute into the game after the Falcons recovered their own surprise onside kickoff. After that though, Wang was a non-factor and Torres had to make enough plays, which he did.
Torres credited his offensive line, although there were several bad snaps he had to deal with, including one in the first half which flew over his head, and after he recovered the ball he was tackled in the end zone for a safety.
“I’m going to miss throws, we’re going to miss moves, reads,” Torres said. “You’re going to miss snaps. That’s just how football is.”
“Joe did a great job running the offense today,” said Schilling.
Pasadena was without its own star player, senior quarterback Brandon Cox who injured his leg earlier this season. His replacement, Caleb Devine, found Wardell Barry in the end zone to make it 17-14 with under a minute left in the game, but the Falcons got the ball back when the onside kick went out of bounds.
The win put CV at 3-2, 1-1 in the Pacific League. Pasadena fell to 1-4 and 1-1 in league.
“A win for high school football players makes the next week’s practice a hundred times better,” said Schilling.
The Falcons forced three turnovers to their zero, giving them an 11 forced turnovers to just three themselves, so at least they’re taking care of the ball even if they aren’t lighting up the scoreboard.
Schilling said they were “hoping and praying” the injury to Lutynski was not season-ending. Lutynski is the only receiver to catch a touchdown pass this year – he has two of them – and he caught Torres’ pass for a two-point conversion last week.
“They are very well-coached,” he said of Burroughs. “Coach [Keith Knoop] does a phenomenal job. Those kids are so tough … They’ll be ready to come here and play us. I guarantee it. It’s going to be a game like [Pasadena].”
The one positive to Lutynski’s injury? The Falcons already have the hardest part of their schedule over with, at least on paper. As of today, they play only one team the rest of their schedule – Burbank – that has a winning record. The way Muir is playing – they’ve shut out CV and Hoover in consecutive weeks – the Falcons can realistically shoot for second place at worst in league, if nothing else goes wrong.
“Muir is showing they’re a little bit better than everybody – right now,” said Schilling. “They’re going to get beat by somebody on the road – I’m hoping – I don’t know for sure. Everybody else is close.”
Pacific League Scores from
Burroughs 24, Glendale 7
Muir 63, Hoover 0
Burbank 41, Arcadia 20