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Laguna captures playoff opener

High School Football

Breakers use 443 rushing yards to dismantle Anaheim, 49-13, in first-round Southern Division game

No. 3 Segerstrom awaits.

November 23, 2011|By Mike Sciacca

For openers, things couldn't have gone better.

The Laguna Beach football team ventured into Anaheim on Nov. 18 to take on Orange League co-champion Anaheim in an opening-round game of the CIF Southern Section Southern Division playoffs. By the end of the night, the Breakers had a one-sided victory in hand after scoring a 49-13 victory.

The Breakers (9-2) host Segerstrom in a quarterfinal-round game Friday. Kickoff is 7 p.m. at Guyer Field.

Laguna and Anaheim were tangled in a tight, 14-13, game almost midway through the second quarter before the Breakers pulled away. They scored the final two touchdowns of the half to go on top, 28-13, at the break, then proceeded to shut out the Colonists in the second half.

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The Breakers racked up 443 yards on the ground, a total that tied for the fourth-best rushing game in school history.

"When I looked at (Anaheim) on film last week, I really liked their defense," Laguna Coach Mike Churchill said. "They play real hard but the one thing they didn't have was speed. And we have speed. We tore them up."

Norton Penney powered Laguna's run game. The senior rambled for 216 yards on 11 carries. He scored the game's first touchdown on a seven-yard run, then added a three-yard scoring run before the first quarter was over.

Penney reached the end zone again on an 85-yard jaunt late in the third quarter to make it a 35-13 game.

Penney now has 1,155 rushing yards for the season (sixth best in program history) and 2,004 for his career (fourth best). His 25 rushing touchdowns rank second all-time and his 32 total touchdowns third.

Right behind Penney was junior back Drake Martinez, who rushed for 191 yards on 17 attempts. The effort included a short touchdown run in the second and third quarters. Martinez also had two receptions for 47 yards.

Martinez now has a school-record 28 touchdowns on the season and is also Laguna's all-time single-season rushing leader at 1,536 yards (11 games).

Junior linebacker Robert Clemons capped the big first-round win with a 102-yard interception return for a touchdown in the fourth quarter.

"It was a complete team victory," Churchill said.

The Breakers intercepted five times total. In addition to Clemons' record-return, Penney, Martinez, McInerny and Zach Jaffe also picked off a pass.

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