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Clip: Comets overcome penalties


Complete article appeared in The Telescope (Oct. 19, 2009)

Cornerback Anthony Young saved his best for last during Saddleback’s homecoming game Oct. 10.

Young had a Palomar record-tying three interceptions, all in the fourth quarter, including one with eight seconds left on the clock. His actions helped seal a 27-21 win for the Comets against Saddleback, a previously unbeaten and nationally sixth ranked team.

Young also had 11 tackles to go with his interceptions.

“Our team played a helluva game and I was able to make big plays at the right time,” Young said.

The win keeps Palomar in the running to win the conference and make the state playoffs. This game was everything that is expected from two teams that were picked to finish first and second in conference in the pre season.

“I knew it would be a good game but did not think it would come down to that,” Head Coach Joe Early said. “We overcame some bad officiating and penalties. Saddleback’s a really good football team but this is a great win for us.”

The Comet scored first when quarterback Nate Ong hooked up with Saalim Hakim for a 56-yard touchdown.

Orenzo Davis got the ball on the Comets’ third series and ran 75-yards to set up another touchdown pass, by Ong. This one was a 7-yard pass to Martavious Lee to make the score 14-0 at the end of the first quarter.
Davis ended the game with 200 total yards (87 rushing, 16 receiving, 97 in kickoff returns).

“It feels good to get the win after last week. We had to redeem ourselves after the loss last week,” Davis said.

As strong as Palomar started out offensively, they were also as dominate defensively.

The Saddleback Gauchos never got into any rhythm offensively in the first half. The Comets held Saddleback’s leading receiver, 6-foot-8 T.J. Knowles, without a catch and star running back Jai Morris to 29 yards rushing and 63 yards receiving.

“We were looking at their formations,” Early said. “What we did was based off of what their offensive formations were.”

Saddleback’s offense started moving in the second quarter when Kory Johnson scored on a 1-yard touchdown to make the score 14-7.

The second quarter also marked the return of starting quarterback Matt Christian.

Christian had been out since the second game of the year when he suffered a hand injury.
“It feels awesome to be back,” Christian said. “I was rusty in the first half but everyone made plays.”

The Comets struggled offensively in the second half because of penalties. The Comets had 17 penalties for 172 yards.

“We have to clean that up and we will,” Early said. “We have to be more disciplined but some of those penalties were not penalties and some were not called.”

Early added that one of those missed calls was an apparent pass interference on Paul Moore.

“You never want to fault the officials for anything but they did not help,” Early said. “We were fighting an uphill battle quite a bit.”

In the fourth quarter, Chris Boudreaux sparked the Comets with a hit that shook up both the Palomar and Saddleback crowds.
“We were in white coverage so I played the middle. We knew what was coming and my coach told me to bait it and I was in the right place at the right time,” Boudreaux said.

The Comets record now stands at 5-1 (1-1 conference). The loss also gives Saddleback and identical record of 5-1 (1-1).


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