Saints Overwhelm Breakers 66-27

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Football (8-5, 4-1)

Adam Armstrong’s returns a kickoff after Santa Ana’s fifth touchdown of the first half.  Armstrong later returned a kick for a touchdown.
Adam Armstrong’s returns a kickoff after Santa Ana’s fifth touchdown of the first half. Armstrong later returned a kick for a touchdown.

Breakers were unable to stop the surging Briseno brothers as Santa Ana High was on all-cylinders in the Southern Section CIF Division 13 semifinals Friday, Nov. 25, at the Santa Ana Stadium. The home team scored on their first five possessions plus a kick-off return to stop the Breakers 66-27.

The two schools last met in the 2008 playoffs that saw Laguna upset the Saints 39-14. The 2016 rematch would not turnout that way.

Santa Ana (12-0) took the opening drive seven plays to score, aided by Jorge Briseno’s 42-yard run on the second play. Still the Saints almost lost the drive with a bad snap and a wild passing attempt that almost was intercepted.

Laguna answered the touchdown when Bruce Knill returned the kickoff 96 yards and a Sean Nolan kick tied the score.

Santa Ana then took five minutes on their next possession to go 67 yards in 12 plays to take the lead for good. Again the Saints were lucky as they survived a bad snap from center to keep the drive alive. Following Santa Ana’s score the Breakers first possession from scrimmage showed promise, but two killer holding penalties cost them momentum.

Breakers did put a strong 10-play, 57-yard drive on their first full possession in the second quarter to pull within 15 at 29-14, but Santa Ana took the ensuing kickoff 86 yards for a score to end any hope of a comeback.

Curtis Harrison set a number of single season records as quarterback, establishing the season total offense record, plays, and touchdowns responsible (rush or pass). Ryan Blaser closed out his career with a single season top 10 performance for Laguna and will be missed along with the versatile Bruce Knill among others.

Breakers had advanced to their division semifinals for the third time in the past six seasons and the ninth overall in the 82 varsity season history.

 

1st 2nd 3rd 4th
Laguna Beach 7 14 6 0 27
Santa Ana 22 20 14 10 66
Matt Hayes blocks as Bruce Knill races for a 99-yard kickoff return.  Fourteen of Laguna’s 27 points resulted from kickoff returns by Knill and Adam Armstrong.
Matt Hayes blocks as Bruce Knill races for a 99-yard kickoff return. Fourteen of Laguna’s 27 points resulted from kickoff returns by Knill and Adam Armstrong.

S – Jorge Briseno 1 run (kick) 9:27 1st Q

L – Knill 96 kick off return (Nolan kick) 9:13 1st Q

S – Jorge Briseno 6 run (kick) 4:19 1st Q

S – Pacheco 1 run (run) 0:43 1st Q

S – Jorge Briseno 1 run (kick) 9:06 2nd Q

L – Nolan 19 pass from Harrison (Nolan kick) 5:40 2nd Q

S – Aquirre 86 kick off return (kick failed) 5:26 2nd Q

S – Jon Briseno 52 pass (kick) 0:22 2nd Q

L – Armstrong 92 kick off return (Nolan kick) 0:10 2nd Q

S – Jorge Briseno 1 run (kick) 6:10 3rd Q

L – Blaser 8 pass from Harrison (kick blocked) 3:34 3rd Q

S – Pacheco 7 run (kick) 0:16 3rd Q

S – 31 FG 10:28 4th Q

S – Jorge Briseno 9 run (kick) 9:52 4th Q

 

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