By Matt Lechuga
For The Signal
The injury bug has been plaguing Saugus all year, but the Centurions were able to push forward, rolling to a 45-7 win over host Canyon on Friday night.
The Centurions’ opening drive featured a healthy dose of Vinny Gallagher as he carried the ball five times for 33 yards, finishing the drive with a 3-yard touchdown to give Saugus an early 7-0 lead. After a Canyon three-and-out, Gallagher returned a punt to the opposing 21-yard line but then left with an apparent ankle injury.
“We have a next-guy-up mentality but when it comes down to it, we’re all just winners. It’s that winner mentality,” said senior linebacker/running back Deohn Turner. “We’re going to do whatever to get the win.”
After Gallagher went out it was Turner who shouldered the majority of the rushing load, carrying the ball 10 times for 68 yards and two scores.
Set up by Gallagher’s punt return, Turner took a handoff 21 yards for the touchdown, pushing the Saugus lead to 14-0. After a Canyon fumble on its next series that set the Centurions up on the Cowboys’ 25-yard line, Saugus drove down and capitalized on the turnover with a 4-yard quarterback sneak by TJ Cataldi.
On the ensuing kickoff, a high and short kick was recovered by Saugus that led to Turner’s second touchdown of the night, a 4-yard run where he went untouched into the end zone and extended the Centurion lead to 28-0.
Canyon (3-6, 1-4) seemed to find some traction on its next offensive drive, going 64 yards on eight plays capped by a 15-yard touchdown on a jet sweep by Navin Srinivasan to make the score 28-7.
“Navin ran hard for us tonight,” said Canyon head coach Ken Holsenbeck. “We have a bunch of guys that will run the ball hard. Getting the ball in their hands, executing up front, we know we can do some good things.”
From there the Centurions scored 17 unanswered points; a 28-yard field goal by Paige McGee, a 9-yard pass from Trent Johnson to Daniel Rogel and a 5-yard pass from Johnson to CJ Mound to make the final score of 45-7.
“We’ve been pretty banged up, going back to Simi Valley honestly, and each week we just find a way to bounce back, have somebody else step up and have someone else fill a void,” said Saugus head coach Jason Bornn. “We have to get healthy and stay focused on us. GV [Golden Valley] is a quality opponent; they’re outstanding, they’re tough, they’re physical, they’re well-coached, they’re disciplined, and they’ve had a week off to prepare for us. We’re banged up so it’s a perfect storm but we’re just going to worry about us and what we can control.”
Next Friday Saugus (7-2, 4-1) will finish league play hosting Golden Valley and Canyon will travel to Valencia.