Pasadena Falls to El Camino

First it was Palomar, and now it's Pasadena. El Camino is having a difficult year by their standards, but for the second time this season they knocked off the #1 team in the region. The Warriors got another big performance from RB Alvin Marshall, and QB Ronald Venters had a marvelous game in relief to lead El Camino past Pasadena, 30-23, November 3rd in Pasadena.

El Camino extended its dominance over Pasadena, winning for the 12th straight time over the Lancers.  Pasadena last beat El Camino in 1989 and has lost to the Warriors once per season every year since then.

Things started well enough for Pasadena when Curtis Lowther intercepted ECC starting QB Ryan Gilbert's first pass of the afternoon.  The Lancers then drove 59 yards and took the lead on a 13-yard run by Jonathan Smith.  It was Smith's 20th touchdown of the season, extending his school record.

When El Camino got the ball back, in came freshman QB Ronald Venters.  ECC had mishandled the kickoff, so they started at their own 8 yard line.  But that didn't faze Venters, who led the Warriors on a 92-yard scoring drive.  Venters threw an 18-yard pass to Bernie Bishop for the score.

Pasadena struck next, re-taking the lead on an 8-yard run by QB Nathan Chandler.  Then El Camino answered back on a 1-yard run by Marshall, making it 14-14 early in the 2nd quarter.  After forcing a punt, El Camino took their first lead on a 36-yard FG by Casey Gardener.  A penalty on the ensuing kickoff left Pasadena to begin at their own 3, but some strong running by Smith and the passing of Chandler got the Lancers out of trouble.  They ended up going 97 yards and took the lead on Chandler's 2nd rushing touchdown of the day.  Even though the XPA was unsuccessful, that gave Pasadena a 20-17 halftime lead.

Pasadena scored the first points of the second half on a 22-yard FG by Joe Timchenko.  That made it 23-17 Pasadena with 8:05 left in the 3rd quarter.  That would also be Pasadena's last scoring play of the game.

El Camino took the ensuing kickoff and embarked on a long drive to the Pasadena 4.  Amidst apparent confusion, ECC called timeout.  After the timeout, it was Pasadena that seemed confused.  The Warriors lined up in a swinging-gate alignment, and as soon as the ball was snapped Venters turned and hit Marshall with a quick pass.  Marshall darted into the end zone, tying the score.  Gardener's extra point gave El Camino the lead, 24-23.

On the next possession, Pasadena drove to the El Camino 5 before the drive stalled.  A penalty pushed them back even further, and they had to settle for a 35-yard FG attempt.  The kick sailed wide right, and Pasadena remained behind by a point.  That would be the Lancers' first missed opportunity of the 4th quarter, but not their last.

El Camino tried to run off some time and perhaps even widen their lead, but a fumble by Marshall near the Lancer 20 was recovered by Lowther, giving Pasadena another chance.  But the drive stalled and the Lancers were forced to punt.

El Camino got the ball back and this time they were able to add to their lead.  Venters' pass to Morgan Ralls from 19 yds out, Venters' 3rd TD pass of the day, made it 30-23.  But when James Griffin blocked the XPA, the lead was kept at 7, giving Pasadena another chance since there was still 3:41 left. 

Pasadena moved the ball to the El Camino 28 on three passes to Smith and a 16-yard run by Chandler.  But the drive ended suddenly when Shane Keck intercepted a Chandler pass with 2:03 to go.

But it wasn't over yet.  The Pasadena defense forced a punt, giving the offense one last chance to tie the game.  A 28-yard punt return by Anthony Owens brought the ball to the ECC 36, and a 15-yard personal foul on the Warriors moved the ball to the 21 with 1:20 to play.

That's when the ECC defense rose to the occasion once again.  Two Chandler runs netted just one yard, and another play resulted in an incomplete pass.  So it was 4th and 9 from the 20.  Chandler scrambled right, but he was brought down at the 17.  The ball went over on downs, and Pasadena's hopes for an undefeated season were brought down as well.

On the day, Venters was 20 of 33 for 273 yards, 3 TDs and no interceptions.  Marshall finished with 109 yards on 21 carries and also had a game-high 7 catches.  Including kickoff returns, he totalled 242 all-purpose yards and scored 2 TDs.  RBs Ryan Jones and Cabot Denny combined with Marshall to power the El Camino running attack to 220 yards on the day.

Pasadena amassed 501 yards of total offense on the afternoon.  Smith had 174 yards on 27 carries plus 5 catches for 53 yards.  WR Octavius Spencer had a strong performance with 5 catches for 103 yards.  Chandler finished with 254 yards on 18 of 29 plus 68 yards on 13 carries including 2 TDs rushing.

Scoring Summary:

1st Quarter:
P – Smith 13 yd run (Timchenko kick) 9:170-7
EC – Bishop 18 yd pass from Venters (Gardener kick) 5:20 - 7-7
P – Chandler 8 yd run (Timchenko kick) 3:02 - 7-14

2nd Quarter:
EC – Marshall 1 yd run (Gardener kick) 14:11 - 14-14
EC – FG Gardener 36 yds 10:2817-14
P – Chandler 11 yd run (kick wide right) 1:34 - 17-20

3rd Quarter:
P – FG Timchenko 22 yds 8:05 - 17-23
EC – Marshall 4 yd pass from Venters (Gardener kick) 3:52 - 24-23

4th Quarter:
EC – Ralls 14 yd pass from Venters (kick blocked) 3:41 - 30-23

Team Statistics:  Pasadena  El Camino
First Downs  24 (14 run; 9 pass; 1 pen)  29 (13 run; 16 pass)
Rushes - Yards  41-247  38-220            
Passing Yards  254  273
Comp - Att - Int  18-29-1  20-34-1
Return Yards  187  99
Sacks - Yards  1-5  1-7
Fumbles - Lost  0-0  2-1
Penalties - Yards 8-66  7-50
Time of Possession  31:22  28:38

Individual Statistics:

P:  1-J.Smith 27-174, 10-Chandler 13-68, 5-Kennett 1-5
EC:  24-Marshall 21-109, 8-Denny 5-55, 41-Jones 8-50, 12-Venters 3-6, team 1-0

:  10-N.Chandler 18-29-1-254
  EC:  12-Venters 20-33-0-273, 3 TDs; 16-Gilbert 0-1-1-0

P:  80-Spencer 5-103, 1-Smith 5-53, 5-Hartsfield 4-71, 5-Kennett 3-27, 64-Schiffer 1-0
EC:  24-Marshall 7-52, 19-Ralls 5-76, 5-Bishop 3-91, 8-Denny 3-33, 9-Crenshaw 2-21

P:  50-D.Jones 3-41.7 avg  EC:  35-Licon 3-37.3 avg

Kick Ret:
P:  4-Hill 4-79, 11-Hartsfield 2-81 EC:  24-Marshall 3-81

Punt Ret:
P:  17-Owens 2-24  EC:  9-Crenshaw 1-13, 20-Harris 1-1                  

Int-Ret Yds:
P:  2-Lowther 1-3  EC:  7-Keck 1-4        

Fum Rec-Ret Yds:
P:  2-Lowther 1-0                                        

P:  6-Griffin 1-5 EC:  57-Riddle 1-7

Missed FG:
P:  43-Timchenko 35 yds (wide right)

Upset!  Pasadena entered 7-0, ranked #1 in South (COA) and #6 in Nation (JCGW). 

El Camino entered 2-5 though one of their wins was vs. #3-ranked Palomar (their only loss).  Gilbert started at QB for ECC but threw an int on his first pass.  Venters entered on the next series and went the rest of the way. 

ECC scored the go-ahead TD on a trick play off the swinging gate formation – a quick pass to Marshall seemed to catch PCC off guard.  Pasadena had 2 last-chance drives but the first ended in an interception and the second ended on downs when Chandler was stopped for a 3-yard gain on 4th and 6 at the ECC 20.  Griffin blocked the XPA for Pasadena.  Smith's TD was his 20th of the season, extending his school record.  Yes, LG Schiffer really did catch a pass.  He was not an eligible receiver and the play was flagged but ECC declined the penalty and let the play stand.

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