No. 2 Riverside Routs Orange Coast for Seventh-Straight Victory

Photo by Bobby R. Hester
Photo by Bobby R. Hester

The second-ranked Riverside City College football team hit the road on Saturday night to face off against the Orange Coast College Pirates in conference action. The Tigers, who rank second in the state with 43.9 points-per-game, continued to light up the scoreboard by putting up 58 points while holding the Pirates scoreless leading to a commanding 58-0 victory.

The Tigers blanked Orange Coast which marks the second time this season they have kept an opponent out of the end zone. They accomplished this feat back in late September when they held Long Beach scoreless in a 47-0 victory. Additionally, this is their second-largest offensive output on the year since putting up 77 points in a victory over San Bernardino.

Riverside accumulated a season-high 637 yards of offense featuring a balanced attack with 323 yards through the air and 314 yards on the ground. Furthermore, the Tigers averaged 11.4 yards-per-play which stands as a season high.

The Tigers jumped on the board first and never looked back as sophomore kicker John Garibay knocked home a 35-yard field goal to give the Tigers a three-point advantage. He has now buried nine-consecutive field goals in a streak that stretches back to week five.

Riverside utilized a strong special teams unit on the ensuing kickoff to regain possession. Freshman defensive back Nicolas Whitney forced an Orange Coast fumble on the Pirates' 22-yard line to set up the Tiger offense. Despite a 10-yard penalty prior to the first snap of the drive, sophomore quarterback Stone Smartt wasted no time finding freshman wide receiver Quavon Beckford for a 33-yard touchdown pass to push their lead to 10-0.

Smartt did not let up on the gas pedal as he continued cut up the Orange Coast secondary as seen in three more touchdown passes in the second quarter. His go-to weapon was freshman wide receiver Tyler Kennedy who caught a 16-yard touchdown pass and a 42-yard bomb down the far sideline. Kennedy's two touchdown catches sandwiched an 80-yard touchdown reception from freshman Jammal Houston, who has now caught a touchdown pass in three-consecutive games, leading to a 30-0 advantage at halftime.

Riverside picked up right where they left off in the third quarter as freshman wide receiver Almount Smith got in on the scoring action. Smartt located him for a 47-yard touchdown pass. Sophomore running back Malik Walker followed with a one-yard touchdown run to pad an already sizable lead.

Freshman Garrett Kettle saw some time under center and made the most of it in the fourth quarter. He began his outing with a 35-yard touchdown pass to sophomore wide receiver Tyrone Marshall, backed by a 60-yard rushing touchdown leading to a 58-0 win.

The Riverside defense dominated all aspects of the game highlighted by recording six sacks. Freshman linebacker Zechariah Holifield paced the brigade with nine tackles which included a sack and a nine-yard tackle for a loss. Freshman defensive lineman Nickolas Figueroa recorded two more sacks to push his total to 10.5 sacks. He ranks tied for fifth in the state in sacks.

Smartt pushed himself into the top-five in touchdown passes in the state with his five connections. He finished the night going 9-for-19 leading to 257 yards. He also carted the ball nine times for 89 yards.

Houston led the receiving core with 107 yards receiving off of two catches, while Kennedy and Marshall each caught three passes and combined for 120 yards.

Riverside (8-1, 4-0 NSL) will round out conference play and face off against the Saddleback College Gauchos on Saturday, November 11 at 6 p.m.