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Start goes as planned for Breakers

High School Football

Laguna Beach does as it pleases in season opener, scoring a school record 55 points in the first half and cruising to a 62-14 victory against Bolsa Grande.

September 06, 2012|By Mike Sciacca
  • Laguna Beach High's Robert Clemens returns the kickoff for a touchdown during the first quarter against Bolsa Grande on Friday.
Laguna Beach High's Robert Clemens returns the… (KEVIN CHANG, Coastline…)

It didn't take long for the Laguna Beach High football team to pick up where it left off 10 months ago.

Playing its season opener in Garden Grove, Laguna again assaulted the school record book on the opening night of its season Aug. 31, a night that resulted in a 62-14 victory over host Bolsa Grande.

The Breakers scored early and often, took an insurmountable lead by halftime then rode out a running clock in the second half to one of its biggest wins in school history.

Laguna, ranked fourth in the CIF Southern Section Southern Division, is looking to ride the momentum against this week's opponent, University, on Friday. The Breakers play their home opener against the Trojans at 7 p.m. at Guyer Field.

Against Bolsa Grande, records fell or were tied on several fronts. The Breakers led, 55-14, at the half. The 55 points were the most scored in a half in 78 years of Laguna football.

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Senior running back Drake Martinez scored five first-half touchdowns, four on the ground and another on a 78-yard punt return. The five touchdowns in one half also was a school record. Martinez, who sat out the second-half of play, scored five touchdowns in a game for the second time in his career. He shares the single-game touchdown record with receiver Chris Paul, who also accomplished the task twice, and running back Donnell Darling.

Martinez finished with 147 yards on seven carries.

Senior running back Robert Clemons set the night in motion by returning the opening kickoff 86 yards for a touchdown. That return gave him a school record three kickoff returns for touchdowns. Clemons later scored on a 39-yard punt return and now has five career returns for touchdowns. That mark ties the school record originally set by Dick Burt (1945-46).

"You know, it was one of those funny games where I wanted to do some things out there, but the game got out of hand real quick," Laguna Coach Mike Churchill said. "Every coach is scared to death of that first game, but really we couldn't have asked for a better start. We made some mistakes, but they are correctable."

Now comes a University team that is 0-2, but Churchill isn't deceived by that start. The Trojans lost last week, 25-8, to Segerstrom, and opened their season with a 35-13 loss to Capistrano Valley. Segerstrom (2-0) is the top-ranked team in the Southern Division.

"They're a good football team," Churchill said of the Trojans. "They have two really good running backs (Chase Alibrando, Jassiem Jensen) who can fly, have really good speed and a quarterback (Connor Martin). I've known Coach (Mark) Cunningham for a long time, and he runs a real good program."

The Breakers have a short practice week between games. Next Thursday, they'll head to Norwalk to take on John Glenn. Kickoff is 7 p.m. at Excelsior High.

michael.sciacca@latimes.com

Twitter: @MikeSciacca

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