Prep Football: Poway High gets defensive in 35-0 blanking of Torrey Pines
By Michael Bower
The Torrey Pines High football team received plenty of attention for its three-game defensive shutout streak and its impressive fourth-quarter blanking of Cathedral Catholic in a 24-17 win in Week 2.
So much attention that defending Palomar League champion Poway – a team that takes pride in being one of the top defenses in the county — felt like it had been forgotten.
Well, on Friday night, the Titans reminded everyone of two things: they still have the best defense in the Palomar League and are still the team to beat.
Ryan Sharpe returned an interception 90 yards for a score and the defense delivered its first shutout of the season, as the Titans now have the inside track to the Palomar League crown after a 35-0 blowout of the host Falcons in the league opener for both schools.
“We heard it all week about their defense and we took it as a challenge to come out and outplay their defense,” Poway senior linebacker Max Michaels said. “Everyone was talking about how they were shutting everyone out and they are a dominating defense. We wanted to show we can be dominating as well.”
The No. 11 Falcons (3-3, 0-1 Palomar) had just three possessions in the Titans’ territory. One resulted in a 90-yard interception return for a touchdown by Sharpe and the other two drives ended in a missed field goal and a punt. Poway’s defense also forced and recovered a fumble.
“We just wanted to prove who the better defense was and I think we did that by putting up a shutout,” Sharpe said. “We took all the talk about their defense as disrespect. We work hard on defense and that is something that we take pride in.”
The Titans’ offense had no trouble finding holes in the defense of the Falcons. Poway (4-2, 1-0) scored four offensive touchdowns – three in the second quarter to take a 28-0 lead into halftime — to put an end to the three-game shutout streak of the Falcons’ defense.
More importantly, the Titans took down arguably their biggest challenger in the Palomar League.
“It’s good to have Torrey Pines out of the way first, but we are going to stay focused,” said Poway running back Nehemiah Gross, who finished with 165 yards and TD runs of 80 and 4 yards. “We are going to continue to work hard in practice and play Poway football.”
The Falcons moved the ball all the way down to the Titans’ 13 before Sharpe’s pick-six came with 7:34 to go in the first quarter. A pair of 4-yard TD runs – one by Gross and one by Mudd – made it 21-0 with 3:43 left before the half.
Brandon Lucas, a speedy 5-foot-10 junior, completed the first-half rout with a 33-yard touchdown run — the first of his career — on fourth-and-1 with 55 seconds before the break.
- Prep Football: Poway High could be in for defensive battle with Torrey Pines
- Prep Football: Poway High puts it all together in 35-6 win over Valley Center
- Prep Football: Torrey Pines High blanks Del Norte
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