With my computer crashing twice on deadline on Friday night, I wasn’t able to get everything all the details into my story about Eisenhower’s 28-7 win over Carter.
So, I thought I’d share some of them, as well as my observations.
The win enabled Ike to win the city of Rialto championship trophy for the first time in five years. Since its inception in 2005 (?), Carter has won it every year except 2008 and 2013, when Ike won it. Rialto has never won it.
I didn’t mention Carter suffered two key injuries early in the game. right tackle Lynell Smith (ankle) and wide receiver/safety Tamas Stewart (collarbone) both left in the first quarter and did not return. The severity of their injuries is not known, but Smith was eventually able to walk to the locker room and Stewart did not need to be taken off on a stretcher.
Statistics: Carter finished with 16 yards passing (2-for-9, 2 INTs), and 180 yards rushing on 41 carries. Ben Fitzpatrick finished with 22 carries for 93 yards. Carter, which was shut out last week, was almost shut out this week before scoring with 4.4 seconds remaining. A key moment came midway through the second quarter when Carter had a second-and-1 at the Ike 45, but the Lions failed to get a first down on three straight running plays between the tackles and turned the ball over on downs.
“We need to mature and be more physical,” Carter coach Alex Pierce said.
Ike had a balanced attack, as Marquane Harris was 14-for-20 for 162 yards and 2 TDs passing, while the run game had 29 carries for 168 yards. Tawon Green led Eisenhower with 85 yards rushing on 15 carries. Terry Clarendon (four catches, 47 yards), Markell Harris (Marquane’s brother, 5 catches, 50 yards) and Niguel Lee (three catches, 51 yards), led the receiving corps.
I find the Eisenhower passing game very intriguing, and I hope some college recruiters do too. This is not a passing game that has stats padded with short screens turning into long touchdowns. In fact, Ike used little in the way of screens on Friday. Ike runs more of a pro-set offense, so it’s not a wide-open spread attack.
Harris could run more, but Ike doesn’t need him to (he had five carries for 32 yards Friday). He’s willing to sit in the pocket and deliver the ball downfield. He has a strong and accurate arm, but he also has some great receivers (like the trio mentioned above), who have great hands and speed. Lee made an acrobatic 34-yard reception on third-and-25 that set up Ike’s first score Friday.
Yet, it’s not a track meet, like you see some games turn into. It’s more of a traditional passing game. Ike has some talent that I hope gets to play at the next level. Even more exciting would be to have Marquane with one of his Ike receivers (maybe his brother?) at the same college, because there seems to be very good chemistry.