Friday, November 27, 2015 • 03:54

Jaguars score three touchdowns in football scrimmage with Chula Vista - Defense causes three turnovers in shutout effort

August 28, 2013
Football season may not have officially started, but fans of the Valley Center varsity football team got their first look at the 2013 Jaguars in a scrimmage against Chula Vista on Friday night.

Though no official score was kept, the Jags thrilled the crowd with three long touchdowns and a host of big plays on defense.

New varsity quarterback Daniel DeLeon and the offense didn't get going right away, but improved noticeably as the scrimmage went on. On Valley Center's third possession of the night, DeLeon connected on three short passes before unleashing a deep bomb to Anthony Ricks for a 31-yard touchdown.

"The offense started out a little bit slowly," DeLeon said after the scrimmage. "We showed some good things, and unfortunately some bad things. We definitely need to get the o-line together and the run game will need to battle for us. And the passing game is far from perfected; we still have a lot of work to do there.

"I need to focus on being more poised and controlled in the pocket," he added. "I need to keep my eyes downfield and work on my footwork. The varsity game is a lot faster [than JV], but as everybody learns the game better and better everything starts to slow down."

JV quarterback Rhett Reilly led the second-team offense to a pair of scores, one courtesy of running back Dustin Dendy, who exploded through the line for a 45-yard touchdown run near the end of the scrimmage. And on the final play of the night, Reilly dropped a beautiful pass into the hands of Jake Newman for a 38-yard touchdown to put an exclamation point on the night.

Even before the long touchdown, Newman was already having a great night on defense, having knocked down the first Chula Vista pass of the night and later intercepting a pass on the Spartans' third drive.

The Jaguar defense caused three turnovers in all—two interceptions and a fumble recovery—and added a quarterback sack for good measure. Newman picked off the first pass, then a group of defenders pushed through the line to get the sack on the very next play.

On Chula Vista's final drive, defensive back Luke Konyn jarred the ball loose from the running back's hands and the Jaguars recovered. Four plays later, the Jags picked off another pass, this time in spectacular fashion. The Spartan quarterback sent a pass down the seam, but Dalton Larabee jumped up and got a hand on the ball, tipping it nearly straight up in the air. The Chula Vista receiver slid to his knees to try and snag the tipped pass, but Juan Gaspar swooped in from his safety spot and grabbed the interception.

"We got better as the scrimmage went on," head coach Rob Gilster said. "We ran the ball well on our first series, so we're happy about that. And I think Daniel grew up as the game went along. The defense did a good job, of course we can see that this Chula Vista team is pretty inexperienced this year, but the defense made some big plays. Overall, we're happy with how we finished the game."

The Jaguars officially open the season this Friday night at home against Mar Vista. The JV team plays at 4:30 p.m. and the varsity kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.

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