The SBCC football team cruised to victory on the road for the second straight week on Saturday, jumping out to a three touchdown lead over West LA on the way to a 37-20 win.
Santa Barbara improves to 2-1 while dropping the Wildcats to 1-2.
The Vaqueros absolutely crushed West LA in the run game, enjoying a 208-57 yard advantage on the ground and averaging a season-best 5.9 yards per carry as a team. SBCC has now rushed for over 200 yards in two straight games, doing so for the first time since early in the 2017 season.
The running attack was led by a breakout performance by Brandon Smith. The freshman went for 152 yards on 17 carries (8.9 y/rush) and two scores. He opened the game’s scoring midway through the first with a 53-yard scamper and added another late in the quarter from 11 yards out to put SBCC up 14-0.
Mekhi Norfleet also had a good day in the Vaquero backfield, going for 52 yards on eight rushes (6.5). He ran one in from 11 yards out as well to make it a 21-0 game early in the second. On SBCC’s next possession, he reeled in an 11-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Trenton Luera.
Luera earned the start for the second straight game and had another efficient performance, finishing 9-of-15 (.600) for 137 yards, two touchdowns and no picks. He threw his second TD of the day in the final minutes of the opening half, when he hit freshman wideout Damare Ward for 46 yards. It was Ward’s first catch as a Vaquero, putting his team up a commanding 35-7.
The Wildcats got two more touchdowns back in the second half as they tried to close the gap. However, their last score of the day resulted in a blocked PAT by defensive back Terrance Biser-Coleman and linebacker Zach Schipper took it back 97 yards for a defensive two-point conversion.
Sophomore defensive back Luke Edwards had a big day for SBCC, leading the team with nine tackles (6 solo) and two pass breakups to go with 1.5 tackles for a loss.
Defensive lineman Jordan Tagaloa dominated inside once again, totaling three tackles for a loss and half a sack.
The Vaqueros will be back home next Saturday, Sept. 24 to face LA Southwest at 1 p.m. at La Playa Stadium.
Michael Jorgenson works in communications/media relations at Santa Barbara City College.