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Wounded Breakers look to rebound

Already injured and winless to start the season, Laguna will be without starting quarterback and star wideout for tonight's contest at Bishop Montgomery.

September 23, 2010|By Mike Sciacca, michael.sciacca@latimes.com

And the hits keep on coming.

Two weeks into the 2010 season, the Laguna Beach High football team is beginning to resemble the walking wounded. The injuries are piling up on the Breakers, who today are in Torrance to face Bishop Montgomery for a 6 p.m. nonleague showdown.

"Yeah, we're a bit banged up," Laguna Coach Jonathan Todd said. "Just when you think it can't get any worse, it did."

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During practice this week, both leading receiver Chris Paul and freshman inside linebacker Steven Harrison, who started last week in a 36-14 loss at Ocean View, suffered concussions and will be held out of tonight's game. Quarterback Austin Paxson, who missed the entire second half of the Ocean View game after injuring his right hand on his throwing arm, has been "really sick" this week and also will be out of action, Todd said.

Prior to the past week, three key Breakers — running back Norty Penney, center/inside linebacker Taylor Preston and running back Michael Hyden (broken leg) — already were on the injured list.

Penney is still sidelined but Preston will be back in action today, Todd said, adding that sophomore Larry Stewart, a lefty who replaced Paxson last week against Ocean View, will get his first start at quarterback against the Knights.

"Larry's been getting some good reps in this week," Todd said. "I really have to give it up for Larry. He was a little shaky at the start when he came into last week's game, but then he settled down and did a good job. He's talented and he's going to be a very good quarterback."

In last week's loss to Ocean View, the Breakers started five sophomores and a freshman (Harrison) on defense and four sophomores on offense, Todd said.

"For me, the Ocean View game showed that a couple of kids can play," Todd said. "Drake Martinez, who's a sophomore, and Steven Harrison, who's only a freshman, really played well and stepped up. I also thought that Ricki Delatorre played well and Travis Clawson had a great game and was probably was our player of the game."

Laguna looked as though it might have its way with Ocean View after striking quickly to go up, 14-0. The Breakers took the opening kickoff and marched right down field. From the Ocean View 22, Paxson lofted a pass to the end zone for junior receiver Derek Reigel, who out-jumped Seahawks defensive back Andrew Medrano to make a nifty touchdown reception.

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