By STEVE GALLUZZO | Sports Editor
For fans who appreciate hard-nosed defense, the first half of last Friday’s JV football game at Stadium by the Sea was full of statistical delights that made Palisades High faithful say “Wow!”
The Dolphins gave their home crowd plenty of reasons to cheer, sacking the Huntington Park quarterback six times while holding the opposition to negative yardage and zero first downs in the first 24 minutes. In fact, the Spartans did not move the chains until late in the third quarter—and that came when Palisades jumped offside.
“I’m happy in that we’ve been up big at halftime two weeks in a row, but we have to learn how to put teams away,” head coach Ray Marsden said of his gritty Dolphins, who were held scoreless themselves in the second half but still won 30-0 for their third shutout in five games. “I was proud of the backups for keeping them out of the end zone on the last play.”
So complete was Palisades’ domination that the Spartans did not cross the 50-yard stripe until the two-minute mark of the fourth quarter with the Dolphins’ starters watching from the sideline. The Huntington Park quarterback was stopped a foot short of the goal line as the clock expired, ensuring more donuts for the Dolphins—their reward for keeping the vistors off the scoreboard.
While defense ruled the day, the offense did its job as well. Quarterbacks Nick Ghysels and Forrest Brock each engineered two scoring drives, Brock ending one with a 10-yard touchdown run. Kenneth Cline scored from three yards out, Kaalan Day scored on a 32-yard run and Jared La Violette scored on a six-yard run. Jake Lyon returned the second-half kickoff 75 yards.
“You never underestimate a team,”Cline said. “No matter the score, play like it’s zero-zero.”