Riverside Upsets Pasadena in a Wild One

Almost exactly a year after El Camino came into Robinson Stadium and toppled a top-ranked and undefeated Pasadena team, the Riverside Tigers turned the trick with a wild 55-41 upset of the Lancers in a game that featured over 1100 yards of offense. Tiger QB Ronnie Hill passed for 337 yards and threw for 3 TDs, and the Riverside defense stopped held Pasadena scoreless on their final 4 possessions of the game to give the Tigers the win.

The game began with an exchange of three-and-out possessions followed by punts.  In fact, the only time either team had any real success on offense during the first few minutes of the game was when Pasadena's Jerome Harrison broke free for a 48-yard run.  And by the time the play was over, Harrison had fumbled, with Riverside recovering the loose ball.

But once the teams started scoring, the points kept coming. 

Riverside got on the board first on a 1-yard run by Matt Padilla with 4:34 left in the first quarter.  His scoring run capped a 4-minute drive, and Steven Quintero's extra point made it 7-0.  But Pasasdena answered back on a 6-yard run by Darnell LoVett less than 3 minutes later.  Joe Timchenko's kick made it 7-7, which is where things stood after the first quarter.

The second quarter began with a long run down the left sideline by RCC's Naim Tinahui.  It was initally called a touchdown, but was later ruled that Tinahui stepped out of bounds at the 4.  But it hardly mattered; Tinahui scored on the next play, giving Riverside a lead it would hold the rest of the game.  A 25-yard Quintero field goal just over 4 minutes later extended the lead to 17-7.

But holding that lead wouldn't be easy.  Pasadena cut the lead to 17-14 on a 25-yard pass from LoVett to TE Randy Misch.  Riverside answered on a 6-yard TD pass from Hill to Tinahui.  Then Pasadena scored again on a 37-yard run by RB David Brinkley.  That made it 24-21 Riverside. 

Pasadena got the break it was looking for moments later when Andre Bradford knocked the ball out of Simon's hands and Mike Currie recovered near midfield.  The Lancers drove to the RCC 13, but a sack by Casey Burchard pushed PCC back to the 23.  Joe Timchenko came in to try a 40-yard field goal with 8 seconds left before intermission, but it was blocked by Riverside's Brent Williams, keeping the score 24-21 Tigers at the half.

After an exchange of punts to begin the second half, Riverside struck again when Hill found Trevon Knox for a 37-yard scoring pass.  And when Pasadena got the ball back, Hoang Mai intercepted a LoVett pass and returned it to the RCC 41.  

That's when Riverside pulled out their trick play:  and end-around option to Rafael Simon, who stopped and launched a 59-yard pass to Knox, who had managed to get behind the defense.  That made it 38-21 Riverside with 8:45 left in the 3rd quarter.

On the ensuing kickoff, Pasadena got a big lift when Vince Valenzuela returned the kickoff 53 yards and into Tiger territory.  At this point, Pasadena also made a change at QB, bringing in dropback passer Luke Sniewski to replace LoVett.  The strategy paid off almost immediately when Sniewski found Hannibal Thomas for an 8-yard scoring pass.  Pasadena also made a change at kicker, bringing in Chris Sprague to kick the extra point.  It was good, cutting the deficit to 38-28.

But Riverside wasn't done scoring yet.  Korey Woodbury took it in from 1 yard out to restore Riverside's 17-point lead at 45-28.  At this point, Riverside had scored 6 TDs and a FG on their last 9 possessions.

But Pasadena wasn't done scoring yet either.  Sniewski found Thomas again, this time from 10 yards out, to cut the lead to 45-35 with 1:38 left in the third quarter. 

And the Pasadena defense nearly joined in the scoring on the next possession.  Pinned deep in their own territory after a mishandled kickoff return and a penalty, Riverside nearly took a safety when Hill threw an incomplete pass from the end zone under pressure from James Griffin.  The play was originally ruled intentional grounding, which would have meant a safety, but the officials later overturned their call.

In any case, the ensuing punt gave the Lancers excellent field position, and they cashed in quickly on a 26-yard run by fullback Allen Kennett.  A bad snap doomed the extra point attempt, leaving Riverside with a narrow 4-point lead at 45-41 with nearly 14 minutes left.

But Pasadena was unable to score again. 

A 25-yard field goal by Quintero restored the 7-point margin, and an 11-yard pass from Hill to Woodbury provided Riverside with another touchdown with 6:21 left to provide the final margin of victory.  The TD pass followed a 58-yard pass from Hill to Robin Owens that got the Tigers into scoring position.

It's not that Pasadena didn't have their chances.  They had two possessions with the score 48-41, but ended up having to punt each time.  And with 4:29 left, the Lancers drove deep into Tiger territory.  But after Blake Garrett caught a Sniewski pass for a 17-yard gain to the RCC 4, he fumbled the ball into the end zone.  It rolled over the end line, giving the ball back to Riverside.  Even after that, Pasadena's defense forced another punt and gave the offense one last chance, but the Lancers turned the ball over on downs with 2:17 to end any remaining suspense.

For both sides, the offensive statistics were pretty gaudy.  Riverside's Ronnie Hill finished 19 of 32 for 337 yards and 3 TDs, and got some help from Rafael Simon, who completed his only pass attempt for 59 yards and a TD on the end-around option play, to push RCC's passing yard total to 396.  Trevon Knox caught 6 passes for 157 yards and 2 TDs and also had 94 yards on 4 kickoff returns.  Simon had 6 catches for 79 yards plus his TD pass to Knox.  Naim Tinahui led all rushers with 142 yards on 28 carries, and also had 2 catches for 40 yards.  He scored one TD rushing and another receiving, as did Korey Woodbury.  In all, Riverside had 176 yards rushing and 572 yards of total offense including 29 first downs.

And Pasadena had stats that were just as impressive.  Hannibal Thomas had 8 catches for 150 yards and a pair of TDs.  Allan Kennett also caught 8 passes (107 yards) and added 35 yards on 3 carries including a TD.  TE Randy Misch had 4 catches for 54 yards including a TD.  Jerome Harrison finished as the leading Lancer rusher with 75 yards on 9 carries, but it was a true team effort as Pasadena finished with 229 yards on the ground on only 26 carries.  Darnell LoVett finished 13 of 23 for 208 yards with 1 TD and 1 interception passing, and added 33 yards on 7 carries including a TD rushing.  Luke Sniewski, who relieved LoVett after the interception, went 14 of 31 for 159 yards and 2 TDs.  In all, Pasadena rolled up 367 yards passing and 596 yards of total offense including 28 first downs.

With the win, Riverside improves its record to 4-3.  Pasadena, meanwhile, drops to 6-1 and will face its traditional nemesis El Camino next week.  ECC has beaten Pasadena 9 straight times, including Pasadena's only loss in 2001 (a 30-23 decision on November 3rd).  And not counting 1992 when El Camino later forfeited a 35-15 win, the Warriors haven't left the field without outscoring the Lancers since 1989.

Saturday, November 2, 2002 - 7 p.m.
at Robinson Stadium (PCC), Pasadena, CA

A Mission Conference (North Division) Game

Riverside Community College (Tigers)  55
Pasadena City College  (Lancers)  41

1st Quarter:

R – Padilla 1 yard run (Quintero kick) 4:34 -- 7-0
P – LoVett 6 yard run (Timchenko kick) 1:41 -- 7-7

2nd Quarter:

R – Tinahui 4 yard run (Quintero kick) 14:42 -- 14-7
R – FG Quintero 25 yards 10:10 -- 17-7
P – Misch 25 yard pass from LoVett (Timchenko kick) 8:13 -- 17-14
R – Tinahui 6 yard pass from Hill (Quintero kick) 5:15 -- 24-14
P – Brinkley 25 yard run (Timchenko kick) 2:39 -- 24-21

3rd Quarter:

R – Knox 37 yard pass from Hill (Quintero kick) 10:19 -- 31-21
R – Knox 59 yard pass from Simon (Quintero kick) 8:45 -- 38-21
P – Thomas 8 yard pass from Sniewski (Sprague kick) 7:16 -- 38-28
R – Woodbury 1 yard run (Quintero kick) 3:51 -- 45-28
P – Thomas 10 yard pass from Sniewski (Sprague kick) 1:38 -- 45-35

4th Quarter:

P – Kennett 26 yard run (run failed after bad snap) 13:49 -- 45-41
R – FG Quintero 25 yards 11:39 -- 48-41
R – Woodbury 11 yard pass from Hill (Quintero kick) 6:21 -- 55-41

Team Statistics: Pasadena Riverside
First Downs 28 (17 pass; 10 run; 1 pen) 29 (15 pass; 9 run; 5 pen)
Rushes – Yards 26-229 41-176
Passing Yards 367 396
Comp - Att – Int 27-54-1 20-33-0
Return Yards 232 141
Sacks – Yards 2-23 2-20
Fumbles – Lost 5-2 2-1
Penalties – Yards 14-126 9-49
Time of Possession 28:07 31:53

Individual Statistics:


P:  3-Harrison 9-75, 37-Brinkley 5-57, 5-Kennett 3-35, 2-LoVett 7-33, 1-Hartsfield 2-29
R:  20-Tinahui 28-142, 3-Knox 1-31, 30-Padilla 6-8, 24-Woodbury 2-6, 7-Hill 4-(-11)


P:  2-LoVett 13-23-1-208, 1 TD; 11-Sniewski 14-31-0-159, 2 TDs     
R:  7-R.Hill 19-32-0-337, 3 TDs; 17-Simon 1-1-0-59, 1 TD


P:  19-H.Thomas 8-150, 5-Kennett 8-107, 87-Misch 4-54, 3-Harrison 2-26, 37-Brinkley 2-5, 82-Garrett 1-17, 13-Pittman 1-7, 1-Hartsfield 1-1
R:  3-Knox 6-157, 17-Simon 6-79, 81-Owens 2-70, 20-Tinahui 2-40, 30-Padilla 2-20, 19-Spry 1-19, 24-Woodbury 1-11


P:  43-Timchenko 6-28.3 avg
R:  21-Quintero 6-38.3 avg

Kick Ret:

P:  22-Price 5-108, 1-Hartsfield 3-51, 33-Valenzuela 1-53, Price to Hartsfield (combined) 1-20
R:  3-Knox 4-94, 38-Gillian-Smith 2-19

Punt Ret:

P:  22-Price 1-0
R:  9-Haynes 2-14

Int-Ret Yards:

P:  none
R:  40-Mai 1-14

Fumble Rec-Yards:

P:  14-Currie 1-0 (forced by 15-Bradford)
R:  57-Fetuao 1-0, team (touchback)


P 2:  48-Oliver, 93-Chambliss
R 2:  55-Burchard 1½, 75-Avatongo ½

Missed FG:

P:  43-Timchenko 40 yards (blocked by 93-B.Williams)

Notes: UPSET!  PCC entered 6-0, #1 in South, #6 JCGW.  RCC entered 3-3, #16 in South.   Simon's pass, an end-around option, came 1 play after the interception  Sniewski replaced LoVett at QB for PCC after the interception  Garrett's fumble went out of endzone.

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