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Breakers take a break

Laguna Beach has bye week before beginning Orange Coast League play Thursday against Santa Ana Calvary Chapel.

October 20, 2006|By Mike Sciacca

A break in the season has come at the right time for the Laguna Beach High football team.

With seven games down, the Breakers now can concentrate on the upcoming Orange Coast League race.

"Concentrate" is the key word.

During the past week, the Breakers have had time to work on all aspects of their game, some of which needed more attention than others. But everything, however, needs to be fine-tuned for an upcoming three-game journey that ultimately will determine whether or not they play a fourth game, and beyond.

In the past three games — all losses, including last week's 48-7 setback to Riverside Notre Dame in a wind-swept nonleague game on the road — Laguna has suffered from breakdowns on offense, fatigue and penalties in watching their overall record dip to 2-5.

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But if the Breakers put all that behind them, then they can concentrate on the upcoming league race that begins Thursday against Santa Ana Calvary Chapel at Orange Coast College.

In reality, Laguna's offense in the last three weeks has moved fairly well up and down the field but has bogged down when moving into scoring position.

"I am happy with our offense's ability to move the ball, but we just can't get any points on the board," said Laguna Coach Jimmy Nolan, whose team has mustered just seven points in its last three games. "From the 20 [yard line] to 20, we are decent, but we just keep shooting ourselves in the foot with mental errors and needless penalties. We are young, inexperienced and it shows.

"We need to work on concentration. The plays were there to make, but we have dropped more balls than we've caught. We also have made some poor decisions throwing the football. Our turnovers have really hurt us. For every two good plays, we have a bad play."

Against Notre Dame, Laguna was shut out until Zach Smith scored on a four-yard run in the fourth quarter.

Yes, a break in the action has come at the right time for the Breakers, who will have had nearly two weeks to prepare for a Calvary Chapel team that, heading into play this week, was 2-6.

"At this point, they need to want this for themselves," Nolan said of the league race. "It's 'do-or-die' time. This is when it counts. With the strength of our past schedule, we should be ready by now. We need to get healthy, be more intense and have a little more desire. It's not what we've done, it's what we're doing and what we're going to do. A new life for this team is upon us.

"I think if we can learn to concentrate while we're really tired, things will start to change. Our boys need to dig deep down and figure out what they want from this season. We are capable of winning games. We have shown some great signs in every game. We just need to mature and start to believe in ourselves more."

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