Saturday Night Football: Rio Hondo Prep cruises, 68-6

SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO — Seriously, can anybody stop Rio Hondo Prep?

There’s a simple answer to such a complex question: No.

Junior stud running back Charles Quintero rushed for 244 yards on 15 carries and scored on runs of 8, 76, 7 and 67 yards to lead Rio Hondo Prep over Saddleback Valley Christian in the second round of the CIF-Southern Section Northeast Division playoffs on a cold and rainy Saturday night at St. Margaret’s High.

Rio Hondo Prep (12-0) will host Salesian (6-6) next Saturday in the semifinals.

Quintero proved too elusive and strong for the Warriors (7-5) defense, which needed third and fourth efforts to bring Quintero down. Junior fullback Nick Preciado was just as dangerous, rushing for 153 yards on 12 carries. He scored on a 20-yard run with 5:09 left in the third quarter to give the Kares a 47- lead.

“Charles had a great game and Nick ran pretty hard himself,” Rio Hondo Prep coach Ken Drain said. “He wasn’t feeling well but played well.”

The defense didn’t skip a beat, limiting Saddleback Valley Christian to 64 yards rushing and 135 yards total.

Jason Sterris and Ed Drain each recorded an interception and Chris Llamas and Preciado each recorded a sack.

The biggest surprise of the game came when senior Cody Cowell played despite sustaining a separated shoulder last week. The injury is nothing new to Cowell, who separated both his shoulders last season but came back in time for the playoffs. The 6-foot-1, 225 pound linebacker/tight end anchors the Rio Hondo Prep defense, but he’s just as valuable on offense.

“He’s our enforcer on defense and he’s a great tight end,” Drain said. “He’s our lead blocker on a lot of our running plays.”

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  • john smith

    i do not think rio hondo prep is ready for the standpede that is coming to them from the salesian mustangs

  • Witness

    Congratulations to RHP on their solid performance against SVC. I am sure Coach Drain will have his boys ready to go come next Saturday against Salesian.

    Don’t be fooled by Salesian’s (6-6) record. Their record on the field was 10-2 having lost only to Division X teams Cantwell-Sacred Heart 16-14 and Mary Star 7-3. Word is their first four wins were declared forfeits due to the use of an ineligible player. Like RHP they are disciplined, physical and very fast.

    For those who want to see two very good small school division teams square off, I urge you to attend next weeks game. You won’t be disappointed

  • Anonymous

    From a previous post…..

    Anonymous said:
    Rio Hondo Prep should not have a problem against Saddleback Valley Christian. I watched SVC play earlier this season at Poly where the Panthers were able to put up 55 points against a rather suspect defense. RHP’s run at their second consecutive CIF title will come down to their semifinal game against Salesian High School should the Mustangs prevail against Mojave. I watched Salesian vs. St. Genevieve and was surprised at their size and quickness. Salesian suits up 52 players and are pretty physical up front where they average 6’3- 260 lbs. If both RHP and Salesain win this weekend, their semi-final matchup should produce the next CIF Division XIII Champion.

  • Anonymous

    Miguel, good thing you know how to spell saturday. Embarrasing…

  • Miguel Melendez

    I’d be more embarrassed that I couldn’t spell embarrassing. But that’s just me.

  • anonymous

    Rio Hondo Prep doesn’t stand a chance against Salesian. Salesian is like playing a public school and they aren’t ready for that. They play no-name schools and then think they have accomplished something. Salesian by 21 on Saturday Night.

  • anonymous

    Rio Hondo Prep will not disappoint next saturday. I have watched them all season and believe the difference between them and other teams is the ability to become all things to any team they face. whatever stampede the Mustangs bring, I believe the Kares will remain standing when the dust settles. The coaching, conditioning and discipline they are trained in are the reasons they are so succesful. Should be a great game.

  • anonymous

    Coaching, conditioning and discipline are key elements of the Rio Hondo Prep football program. Next Saturday’s game will prove no different. I have watched R.H.P. all season and believe the reason for their success is the ability to become all things to any team they face. Whatever stampede the Mustangs bring, when the dust settles the Kares will remain standing. As far as size and numbers go, R.H.P. has approximately 50 boys enrolled in high school compared to almost 400 at Salesian but remember, it’s not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog. Should be a great game.

  • Anonymous

    Anonymous November 29, 2009 11:02 AM,

    I agree with your statement “it’s not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog”. That said, the Boyle Heights community in Los Angeles has been known to put out some pretty tough dudes. Should be a great game!!

  • Anonymous

    It’s going to be a dog fight period! Rio Hondo won the home field advantage but who’s counting luck. This up coming game will be won by faith. Faith the players find in themselves, faith they find in each other, and the faith their coaches have in them. After watching both teams play I can tell you that they have reached a cohesion of faith in one another that is the hallmark of all championship teams. However, the team whose players place their faith in God and seek to glorify Him rather than themselves will be the team that comes out on top.

  • Anonymous

    Well said….There will certainly be a whole lot of faith on that field Saturday night. I am sure your comment pretty much sums up the same sentiment from the Catholic school boys at Bishop Mora Salesian. Looking forward to a great game!

  • anonymous

    i have been watching both of these teams and i think RHP is going to be suprised on the way these mustangs are going to play. the mustangs are playing with a very good offensive line top recievers and the best defensive squad in the division. i have salesian by 14

  • anonymous

    i have been watching both of these teams and i think RHP is going to be suprised on the way these mustangs are going to play. the mustangs are playing with a very good offensive line top recievers and the best defensive squad in the division. i have salesian by 14

  • Golden Bear

    NEVER count the Kares out!

  • Anonymous

    Golden Bear,

    Anybody who counts out Rio Hondo Prep is short sighted and more than likely not well versed in small school football because anybody who has watched them play knows that they can execute. Their defense has been their cornerstone and their backs can surely scoot.

    That said, I believe Salesian is the toughest team RHP will face this season. In preperation for the CIF playoffs, and to ready for teams like RHP, the Mustangs played a decent schedule which included; four Division X teams, Bishop Diego (W-49-6),Cantwell-Sacred Heart (L-16-14), Bosco Tech (W-30-14), and Mary Star(L-7-3). Although two of the victories were later forfeited it does not deter from the fact that their experience in playing larger schools…..Is simply…good experience.

    I watched Salesian play twice this season and they are fast and very physical. Their backs are shifty and fast and clearly on par with Quintero and Preciado. Their defense is quick and will hit harder than any team RHP has faced this year. However, the strength of the Mustangs has been their large offensive line (6’4″-260, 6’1″-268, 5’10”-278, 6’2″-220) which has controlled the line of scrimmage game after game.

    In my opinion, this game will boil down to conditioning and keeping your players fresh…a luxury that benefits Salesian who will probably suit up 50 plus players.

    One thing is certain…With two quality defenses on the field, don’t expect anybody to put up 50 plus points. Nontheless, this will be one heck of a match up.

  • Anonymous

    Can somebody explain how Salesian only put up 16 against St. Genevieve? St. Genevieve gave up 52 to Poly and then the next week, Poly goes out and gets shut out by Linfield Christian. They never got the ball past midfield and had 15 rushes for 2 yards.

    The St. Genevieve score is real suspect to me about Salesian. I think Rio will beat Salesian and set up a rematch of last years semi-final, Linfield vs. Rio Hondo, which was probably the true championship from last year.

  • Anonymous

    Anonymous November 30, 2009 1:31 PM ,

    Utilizing your faulty logic regarding Salesian vs, St. Genevieve….

    RHP beat Boron 28-20 then Chadwick beats Boron 38-22. Because Chadwick scored more points, we should surmise Salesian will beat Rio Hondo Prep!! Hhhmmmmmm??

  • Manic Hispanic


    Can you please get a name? It’s becoming difficult to follow this thread.
    Also, Miguel won’t repond to anonymous posters.

  • St. Gen Post

    You clearly missed my point. How does Salesian only put up 16 points against a Gen. team that gave up 52 to Poly?

    In no way am I saying that Poly is better than Salesian, but this makes me curious. Rio’s defense is really good and if Salesian could only muster 16 points against a terrible Gen. defense, what will they do against a defense like Rio’s?

  • Still Don’t Understand Faulty Logic

    I can’t answer for what happened against Poly; however, against Salesian I reckon they might have been just a little fired up….After all they went into the Santa Fe League Championship game against Salesian with a perfect 9-0 record. Perhaps that would have most teams pumped up and motivated to play well. Just a guess!!

  • Anonymous

    St. Gen Post ,

    Since you mentioned how Salesian would do against a “really good” defense like Rio Hondo Prep’s, I did a little homework and found that the combined won-loss records of the teams RHP played was 60-68. Not that impressive in the grand scheme of things.

    By the way Salesian’s opponents record was 64-61…which includes games against four Division X teams.

    I am giving Salesian a good chance at pulling off the upset.

  • Random Fan

    How about instead of arguing over a bunch of numbers and stats, lets just let the boys decide it… on saturday… on THE FIELD!… Not on the blog comments, but on Kare Field. It’s going to be a great game!

  • fan

    St. Genevieve lost a couple of key players to injuries after they played Salesian. Thats why they didn’t do as well against Poly. Duh !!

  • ….

    RIO BBY!!

    [S.M] ROXXX



  • das


    IN IT TO WIN IT.!!

    [S.M] ROXXX



    Rio Hondo’s Defence hasnt allowed anyone to score on them in five weeks… that alone is pretty impressive (saddleback scored on special teams not Offence)
    should be a good game

  • Anonymous

    RIO FAN,

    Holding teams scoreless for five consecutive weeks is quite impressive.

    When you factor in the combined records of those five teams held scoreless: 21 wins-32 losses–not so impressive.

  • Mustang 80

    St. Gen Post,

    You questioned the fact that Salesian only scored 16 points against a then 9-0 St. Genevieve team. The fact remains they got the “W”.

    What stands out to me is how Salesian’s defense was able to limit an offense averaging 43 points a game to only 10.

    RHP currently averages 39.7 points per game…..HHHMMMMM!!

    Looking forward to a good game!

  • Manic Hispanic

    Mustang 80 and others,

    Points per game mean nothing! If you had seen ANY of RHP’s games, you would realize that they pull their starters by halftime in most of their games. Unlike some teams, Rio won’t run up the score for the sole purpose of being considered for a state bowl game, Rio can’t afford to lose a starter when their up by 30 points, since most players play both offense and defense.

    In the case of Saddleback Valley Christian, Rio had their freshman and foreign exchange students in by the 3rd quarter and THEY scored over 30 points!

    Also, the fact that Salesian has faced Division X teams is a moot point. the teams that beat Salesian outright (Mary Star, Cantwell S.H.) didn’t even make the playoffs! Bishop Diego only won two games all year and one was a Salesian Forfeit. Bosco Tech didn’t win a single league game and lost their last 6, really 7 games but once again Salesian forfeited!

    So try not to manipulate the numbers too much…facts don’t lie!

  • And Others

    Manic Hispanic,

    I think you missed Mustang 80’s point. I read it again and it appears his focus was on Salesian’s Defense. The emphasis was on how Salesian held a high scoring offense like St. Gens. to 10 points.

    As Miguel noted in his article, Mojave only suited up 18 players and came right at Salesian to start the game; however, Mojave was forced to play for four quarters and their very tired defense was a major factor in Salesian putting up 18 points in the final 6-7 minutes.

    I have watched Salesian play three times this season, and one thing is certain, unless they self-destruct, your 16 freshmen and sophomores will not be playing by halftime, and you can advise your foreign exchange students to leave their helmets in the locker room-they won’t be needing them. Your 11 Juniors and Seniors will get plent of action.

  • Anonymous

    Manic Hispanic,

    Come on brother you are losing crediblity here. Mary Star lost to Cathedral in the first round of the playoffs. Do your homework before you post.

  • And Others

    Sorry, Miguel’s quote is only “Mojave suited up 18 players”. The rest is my quote.

  • Go Get em

    Haha all you Rio haters are in for a surprise on saturday! PLEASE go to the game! Watch what Rio Hondo football is all about. People make a big deal about the size of Salesian and their aggressive play, but Rio is used to facing much bigger opponents and NO ONE is more aggressive than the Kares. Also, the coaches at Rio really condition their athletes well so don’t think that fatigue will be a factor, most of their players have played well every game going both ways, for the whole game, so this week shouldn’t be any different. With that said, I have Rio winning by 14.

  • Mustangs

    Mission Prep 23-7 (W)
    Kilpatrick 2-0 (W) F
    Brentwood 23-13 (W)
    Boron 28-20 (W)
    Desert 40-6 (W)
    Flintridge Prep 48-0 (W)
    Chadwick 43-7 (W)
    Viewpoint 44-0 (W)
    Poly 2-0 (W) F
    Webb 46-0 (W)
    Desert Christian 34-0 (W)
    SVC 68-6 (W)

    Based on RHP schedule (above) I would place my $$ on Salesian.

    Powerful D….Look at the schedule. High scoring offense.Again look at the schedule.

    RHP tough games were early in the season, and since then, theyve been on cruise control. No cruising this Saturday!

    Mustangs heading home for a CIF Title!!!

  • Rio Hondo Supporter

    In response to Mustangs comment, to say that Rio has been on cruise control is a testimony to your own lack of understanding Rio Hondo football. Chadwick is no slouch and if you didnt notice, SVC was the champion of their league, and we beat both those teams solidly. RHP takes their football seriously and never plays on cruise control. I appreciate the passion of these comments back and forth but as Golden Bear said NEVER count the Kares out. Come tomorrow night they will be ready.

  • RHP Fan

    Everything that Rio Hondo Supporter said is true. The fact that RHP is the smallest school in the state of California that plays 11-man football with a total boys enrollment less than 50 from 9th to 12th grade and is second only to Long Beach Poly in CIF titles is amazing. Come watch the game tomorrow to see how hard work and dedication can play out on the football field with just a few boys who mean business.

  • Rio fan

    That’s right Salesian!! What happened to your “physical” O line who averages 6’3 260 lbs??? They got owned!! If you hadn’t hurt three starters with your cheapshots, it would have been a blow out! It was gonna be 21-0 but then our starting QB got hurt! C’mon!! Talk trash now stupid, ignorant fans!!!

  • RHP Fan

    Yeah baby!!! That’s how we roll in the 626. Whooooo!

  • RHP band mem

    W00T! The little Kares beat the “all mighty” Mustangs. Where is the stampede that you were supposed to bring? I guess it only takes 22 Kares to beat the 58 “Ponies.” There is no substitute for hard work and dedication as you found out on the football field tonight. WERE GOING TO CIF!!!!!

  • Mustang 80

    Rio Fan,

    Quit sniveling you guys played a gutsy game and derserve said credt. It was most definitely a physical game to say the least. Two Salesian turnovers in the red zone really hurt the Mustangs, I do not beleive anybody “got owned”. I will leave it at that.

    I hope Quintero and Llamas’ injuries are not serious.

    Good luck in the finals… you guys showed a lot of heart.

  • Rio fan

    Mustang 80, before all our injuries, we were running circles around you guys, I call that getting owned. Watch the film if you don’t believe me. But it was a great game. Really fun to watch!

  • Mustang 80

    Rio Fan,

    Injuries are part of the game. Both teams were knocking the !#$* out of one another. Bottom Line …….if Salesian does not fumble inside the five yard line with 2:45 left in the game….Well….Coulda, shoulda, woulda…….RHP showed “ganas” when their “go to guys” were sidelined.

    Good luck next week!!

  • Rio fan

    Mustang 80, fair enough. There’s no need to argue, it was a very good game. Both teams played hard and it was great to see. But it goes to show you that it’s not all about size. Anyways, thanks for your class unlike some other Salesian fans. But thanks for your good luck wishes! Hope to see you guys next year!

  • MJR35

    Well, the stage is now set: Two undefeateds (RHP and Linfield Christian, both 13-0), facing off Saturday night for the title. Just as it should be. RHP is definitely behind the 8-ball though, having lost its starting QB and having to resort to a guy who hadn’t taken a snap in nearly two years. But Hannah proved himself capable of keeping the Kares together, and have earned the right to defend their title. Fortunately for them they also have home-field advantage, with the game being held at Kare field in Arcadia. It definitely won’t be easy though, facing a tough Lions squad that knows how to put points on the board. It’s really going to be up to to the Kares’ defense – the only defense in the division to allow under 100 points TOTAL this season (including playoffs). Linfield was ranked above RHP throughout the season, and perhaps rightfully so, but all that doesn’t matter now. Saturday night at Kare field, the battle will ensue. See you there!

  • Rio

    Our QB is fine.

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