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Prep football: Saugus comes close with Taft

Centurions trailed by less than a touchdown with two minutes to play in game against top opponent

Posted: October 1, 2010 11:52 p.m.
Updated: October 2, 2010 4:55 a.m.
 

WOODLAND HILLS — Saugus knows it was almost there.

The Centurions trailed Taft at Taft High on Friday night by just five points with two minutes to play. On top of that, Saugus had the ball.

But the Centurions couldn’t pull it off and lost 37-26.

“Our offense was phenomenal and our defense was good, too,” said Saugus head coach Jason Bornn. “We just ran out of time.”

With just 2:01 left in the game, the Centurions had the ball on their own 26-yard line and trailed 31-26.

But Taft linebacker Jonathan Major sacked Saugus quarterback Jared Carbajal for a 6-yard loss, giving the Centurions fourth-and-11.

Saugus went for the first down, but Taft forced Carbajal to fumble and The Toreadors recovered the ball on the 5-yard line.

From there, it took just one play for Taft to put the game out of reach on a 5-yard touchdown run by Kenny Thompson.

Saugus was playing catch up with Taft for the entire game after the Toreadors scored on their opening drive on a 15-yard run by Dimitray Lewis.

The Centurions did tie the game at 7-7, though, a minute into the second quarter on a 7-yard run by Chris Wolford.

Taft took a 21-7 lead on a 61-yard touchdown run by Anthony Nickerson and a 28-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Michael Bercovici to Michael Thomas.

Saugus closed in to 21-14 on a 1-yard run into the end zone by Wolford, but the Toreadors again extended their lead after Bercovici and Thomas connected again, this time on a 10-yard pass for a 28-14 lead at the half.

The Saugus defense was able to hold Taft to just nine points in the second half.

“Our offense was solid in the first half, but three penalties in the second really cost us,” said Taft head coach Matt Kerstetter.

Bercovici was 17-of-29 for 257 yards.

Carbajal was 9-of-14 for 184 yards and carried the ball 34 times for 108 yards.

Bornn liked what he saw from his team as they take a week off before Foothill League play begins on Oct. 15 against Canyon.

“Our team played tremendous,” Bornn said. “You’re talking about a team that’s loaded with (NCAA) Division I talent.”

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