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High School Football: Breakers hit reset button

Laguna Beach feels as if starting over as it begins Orange Coast League play with Saddleback.

October 10, 2013|By Mike Sciacca
(Don Leach / Coastline…)

It's been a rough few weeks for the Laguna Beach High football team.

The Breakers, who have become accustomed to victories and high rankings over the past two years, enter the start of their Orange Coast League season this week with neither.

A 35-19 loss to Northwood in their final nonleague game on Oct. 4, was the second-straight setback for the Breakers. The loss also cost them a slot in the weekly CIF Southern Section Southern Division rankings. At No. 7 last week, the loss to Northwood dropped the Breakers out of the rankings.

They had risen as high as No. 4 in the poll three weeks ago.

This week marks the first time since 2010 that the Breakers haven't been ranked, and that season also marked the last time they had dropped consecutive games.

Now, Laguna gets the chance at a new start. The halfway point of the season this week brings the beginning of league play. The Breakers (3-2) begin defense of their 2012 league championship on the road against winless Saddleback on Friday.

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Kickoff is 7 p.m. at Segerstrom High in Santa Ana.

Laguna comes into the game with consecutive losses starting with a Sept. 27 loss at St. Margaret's (No. 1, CIF Southern Section East Valley Division).

"We haven't played very well the past two weeks, but we've played two very good teams," Laguna Coach Corey Brown said. "You can't turn the ball over like we did against Northwood, and expect to win. We turned it over early, and never recovered."

Laguna turned the ball over on its first five possessions (four fumbles, three interceptions) and, as Brown said, never did recover.

The first two Laguna possessions ended in fumbles, the second one occurring at the Northwood two-yard line after a big, 67-yard run by Nathan Lancaster with the Breakers seemingly going in for a score in a scoreless game. The Timberwolves turned the turnover into a 98-yard touchdown drive of their own which they kept alive early by a gutsy and successful fake punt from their own end zone.

The Timberwolves also cashed in on another fumble recovery for their next touchdown which gave them a 14-0 lead at the half. Leading 21-0 in the third quarter, they went up four scores by returning an interception 44 yards for a 28-0 lead.

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