San Pedro football players had chips on their shoulders Friday night in Eagle Rock — and it showed.
The Pirates avenged last year’s overtime loss in the City Open Division quarterfinals by scoring 48 consecutive points in a 54-7 victory highlighted by a relentless defense and three touchdown receptions by Elias Mitchell.
“Our goal every week is to finish,” said Mitchell, who caught scoring passes of 22 yards, 36 yards and one yard from Marcus Jeronymo, who alternated possessions with fellow quarterback Anthony Lopez. ”Our team has great chemistry and since we started practicing we’ve had this game on our minds.”
San Pedro was undefeated and seeded No. 1 heading into the playoffs last year but squandered a 14-point lead in the final five minutes of regulation against the No. 8 Eagles. This time, the Pirates (2-2) built an early lead and never let up against a squad that lost 25 players to graduation.
“This whole year all we’ve thought about is this game,” said Anthony Estrada, who had a 12-yard touchdown catch from Lopez. “We came out with fire and aggression and winning big was our goal. Playing two quarterbacks gives us different looks and we’re confident in both of them.”
Jay Reyes ran for a 48-yard touchdown, Lopez scored on a sneak and Justin Holt had a five-yard touchdown reception to close the scoring with 2:22 left.
The Eagles (2-2) scored their only touchdown on a 10-yard pass from Reilly Brousseau to Liam Pasten in the first quarter. Star wideout Barry Weatherspoon, who scored six touchdowns in the team’s first three games, was held scoreless for the first time.
San Pedro also won the junior varsity contest 41-16, but in the second game of Friday’s tripleheader Eagle Rock’s girls’ flag football team prevailed 28-6 thanks to three scoring passes by senior quarterback Teiya Hermida to establish itself as the team to beat in the City.
The Eagles (3-0) gave up the first score — the only points they have allowed all season — but were ahead 8-6 at halftime thanks to Hermida’s 17-yard strike to leading receiver Haylee Weatherspoon and Brooklyn Romero’s two-point conversion catch.
“A lot of the stuff we practiced we were able to execute in the game,” said Hermida, a shortstop and third baseman on the softball squad who threw for seven touchdown passes versus Roosevelt and six more versus Bell, giving her 16 in three games. “Being a softball player definitely helps my accuracy. I love both sports but I find football harder because I’m new to this. I knew the second half would be our half because I know what our receivers can do.”
Romero and Audrey Campos also had touchdown receptions while Zoe Lambrino ran for a score and MarySol Jernigan, who usually rotates with Hermida at quarterback, caught a key two-point conversion.
“This is the first game I haven’t played QB but one of our receivers [Alina Albuja] is injured so I filled in for her,” Jernigan said. “I’ll do whatever I can do to help the team.”
Madison Adrid threw a 15-yard touchdown pass to Noelani Raigans for the Pirates (4-2), who had shut out their previous three opponents.
Haylee will have the last laugh at the Weatherspoon dinner table this week as her touchdown — her eighth of the season — moves her two ahead of her older brother.