Sports in the News
Trick Or Treat: PCC's Thomas Scores 4 Different Ways In Football's 27-20 Win Over Moorpark
Reuben Thomas's fourth touchdown with 1:31 remaining gave the Pasadena City College football team a 27-20, National Northern Conference victory over Moorpark College Saturday afternoon at Robinson Stadium.
At the Moorpark 1-yard line, Thomas, playing quarterback in the red zone for the Lancers, misconnected on a handoff to running back John Roberson. But the 5-foot-11, 175-pound utility freshman alertly dove into the end zone and recovered the fumble for the game-winning TD.
The region's 19th-ranked Lancers snapped a 3-game conference losing streak to reach the .500 mark at 4-4. Moorpark's winless season continued at 0-8 and 0-4 in NNC play.
Thomas (from John Muir High) capped a spectacular Halloween day in which he scored touchdowns four different ways. He scored on a 1-yard sneak with 4:47 left in the second quarter that tied the game, 7-7.
Just 1:22 into the third quarter, Thomas broke through three different Moorpark tacklers on his way to a 75-yard punt return for a TD that gave the Lancers a 13-7 lead. With 41 seconds to go in the period, he pulled in a 4-yard TD pass from starting quarterback Nate Montana that again gave PCC a 20-13 advantage.
After Moorpark tied it, 20-20, on a 2-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Ian Shultis to wide receiver Chris Gant early in the fourth quarter, PCC would eventually start its winning drive with 5:35 left.
Acting Head Coach James Kuk made the decision to go to his fifth quarterback of the season in freshman Caleb Fore, who had not taken a game snap in seven previous contests. Following a 22-yard punt return by Thomas to the PCC 47, Fore went to work, completing four consecutive passes. Fore found receiver Kemonte Bateman for completions of 21 and 9 yards, then hit running back Anthony Pines for a 20-yard screen pass to the Moorpark 16.
Fore (from Waialua, Hawaii) split traffic for a 10-yard throw to a diving Sean Carraway that got it to the Raiders' 7. A 6-yard run by Roberson set up the scary, but ultimately joyous recovery TD by Thomas. Nick Luevano's second extra point finalized the scoring.
On the ensuing series, PCC linebacker Jeremy Aguilar twice hurried Shultis into incompletions after a sack by linebacker Darrian Richardson in ending Moorpark's hopes.
Aguilar, a sophomore team captain, had perhaps his best game of the season with a team-high 9 tackles, a team season-best 4 quarterback hurries and 2 pass breakups. Right before PCC began its winning drive, Aguilar forced Moorpark into a punting situation with a bone-jarring tackle of Shultis at the Raiders' 35 after the quarterback raced 10 yards upfield.
Thomas upped his team-leading season scoring total to 90 points on 15 touchdowns. With two regular season games left, Thomas has the fourth highest TD total in school history, one behind Ike Williams (1997) and two behind the legendary Jackie Robinson (1938). Jonathan Smith is far away the all-time TD leader with 31 scored in the team's Mission Conference championship year of 2001.
Overall, Thomas had 3 punt returns for 112 yards and 3 receptions for 20 yards.
Pines, a sophomore, had his biggest day of the year with 110 yards rushing in 15 carries, including the team's longest rush of the season of 37 yards. He added 3 receptions for 24 yards.
On the defensive side, linebacker Will Do blocked an extra point and defensive end Ahkeem Mckinney intercepted a pass.
Moorpark got a big play in the first quarter from Meke Okechuku who blocked a field goal attempt by Brian Gonzalez and returned it 63 yards for a touchdown. Shultis completed 22 of 42 passes for 328 yards and 2 touchdowns.
Fore was 4-for-5 for 60 yards in relief of Montana, who was 13-for-27 for 87 yards, but threw 2 interceptions.
PCC's defense limited the Raiders to a minus-8 yards rushing in 20 plays, helped by linebacker Raymond Gordon who had 3 tackles for negative yardage.
The Lancers will close their home schedule Saturday, November 7 when they face College of the Canyons in a 6 p.m. Homecoming night kickoff at Robinson Stadium.
[Photo--Reuben Thomas (23) put on a show with four touchdowns during the Lancers' 27-20 win over Moorpark Saturday at Robinson Stadium, image by Richard Quinton.]
Release Date: 10/31/09