Saturday, October 12 2013 @ 08:09 AM PDT
Contributed by: DanCollier
By BRIAN WHITEHEAD
FOR THE REGISTER
YORBA LINDA > It´s supposed to take new football programs more than a year to
establish themselves as legitimate league threats. It´s supposed to take
underclassmen more than a year to mature into dynamic varsity players.
Coaches typically need more than a year to implement their systems, heighten
their respective program´s expectations and develop their personnel. Most new
football programs aren´t like Yorba Linda´s, though. And most football coaches
aren´t like Jeff Bailey.
Four years removed from their inaugural Empire League season, the Mustangs
declared themselves league favorites with a 28-21 victory over Valencia on
Friday at Yorba Linda High. "That´s a great ballclub," Bailey said of Valencia.
"They´re well coached, tough and disciplined. We´re excited about this win."
With perennial league champion Tustin no longer the terror it once was, Yorba
Linda (6-0, 2-0) threw its hat into the ring as the heir apparent to the Empire
It´ll be the fifth-year program´s fourth straight season in contention. "We have
a great group of kids who have worked hard since the start," Bailey said.
"Summers in the offseason, falls in the heat, our kids have bought into our
system. We´re a family. "We´re not the biggest or fastest team, but, man, we
play hard." Scores from Jake Fischbeck and Jimmy Gilles put the Mustangs up,
14-0, early in the first quarter. Valencia´s defense intercepted quarterback
Jake Gigliotti twice in the half.
Its offense, however, couldn´t convert on the ensuing possessions. Yorba Linda
had a 20-0 lead at intermission and was never threatened. "Jake had a great
game, but turnovers almost cost us," Bailey said. "He made plays when we needed,
though. Sometimes plays you design work, and sometimes they don´t." Tom Torres
(85 rushing yards) scored on touchdown runs of 16 and 1 yards for Valencia (5-2,
[ Valencia - Yorba Linda ] Photo Gallery