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CIF football playoffs: Vikings' point of return

Valencia defeats Quartz Hill to make Northern Division semis for third time in four years

Posted: November 17, 2012 2:00 a.m.
Updated: November 17, 2012 2:00 a.m.

QUARTZ HILL — Everything was fast.

From the scoring drives to the postgame speech.

It was as if Valencia football was in a hurry to get to the point that has been its biggest obstacle in recent history.

Valencia cruised past Quartz Hill Friday night 42-7 at Quartz Hill High in a second-round CIF-Southern Section Northern Division playoff game that was never close.

Now the Vikings (9-3) host Palos Verdes next Friday in the Northern Division semifinals — a game they have now reached three of the last four years.

Their previous two trips (2009 and 2010) ended in bitter defeat.

“I think this year we’ll change that,” said Valencia junior wide receiver Nick Jones, who caught seven passes for 173 yards on Friday, including a 96-yard touchdown on the first play of the second quarter.

But Jones didn’t experience the other two trips to the semifinals.

Valencia head coach Larry Muir certainly has.

“I think each team has its own identity. The teams in the past set a standard and pushed us to a point,” Muir said. “(With this team), it has to be about next week. This team doesn’t think in those terms. They think about right now.”

But there’s no denying that a win in the semifinals will take the four-straight Foothill League championship program to a higher level of respectability.

Muir said he understands that and remembers the past, but re-emphasized that his kids live in the moment.

They certainly did on Friday, looking much different than the team that had to scratch and claw to beat Paso Robles 43-36 in the first round on Nov. 9.

Valencia scored on its first four possessions and held the Rebels (8-4) to three three-and-outs on their first four possessions.

Before Quartz Hill could blink, it was 21-0 Valencia in the first quarter.

Valencia quarterback Sean Murphy connected with Malik Townsend for a 60-yard score with 8:44 to play in the first quarter.

Murphy followed that up with a 23-yard touchdown pass to Ethan Yoo.

Backup quarterback Jake Wallace scored on a 1-yard run with 1:25 to play in the first to get the score up to 21-0.

Valencia’s first four scoring drives lasted 49 seconds, 1:54, 1:45 and 15 seconds.

“We knew we had our hands full,” said Quartz Hill head coach Pat Degnan. “(Murphy) had so much time and the receivers were running amok downfield. If you blitz them, then they screen.”

Murphy was 15-of-22 for 349 yards with four touchdowns and one interception. He was out of the game midway through the third quarter.

The Rebels threatened in the second, thanks to the running of Osirius Burke, who rushed for 109 of his 175 yards in the second frame.

His 2-yard touchdown with 3:25 to play in the second cut the lead to 28-7.

But the Rebels couldn’t capitalize on a late first-half Murphy interception and missed a 28-yard field goal attempt that would have cut the lead to 18 going into halftime.

Valencia added two touchdowns in the third quarter — a 40-yard pass to Tedric Thompson and a 10-yard run from James Berkley.

Outside of Burke, Quartz Hill managed just 96 yards on the Viking defense.



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