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Football Wins Thriller Over Hancock, 22-14

Football Wins Thriller Over Hancock, 22-14 image

(Santa Maria) -- Linebacker Kimball Niumatalolo returned an interception 81 yards for a touchdown with 17 seconds left as the Pasadena City College football team clinched its second straight non-conference road victory, 22-14, over Allan Hancock College Saturday night at Righetti High School.

The Lancers (2-0) seemed to be in jeopardy when Spencer Dudley caught a 28-yard pass from Hancock quarterback Gavin Kelly, giving the Bulldogs a first down at the PCC 8-yard line with 39 seconds remaining.

Back-to-back offensive penalties sent Hancock back to the 23, before safety Chris Tyson blitzed Kelly, deflecting his pass attempt into the hands of Niumatalolo for his game-clinching, interception return. Nose tackle Manako Tuifua would pick off another pass on the game's final play.

With Hancock (1-1) leading 14-12 late in third quarter, Tyson earlier changed the game's momentum on an interception to end a Bulldogs threat at the PCC 33. Pasadena marched downfield and took a 15-14 lead on a 36-yard field goal by Brian Gonzalez.

The sophomore punter-kicker Gonzalez twice boomed long fourth-quarter punts of 75 (tied for second longest in PCC history) and 61 yards that each were downed inside the Hancock 10. Gonzalez finished with eight punts for a 42.1 yards average.

PCC's defense often made big plays throughout the contest. Sophomore safety Omar Smith put on a clinic with a team-high nine tackles to go with a school record seven pass break-ups. Both Tyson and lineman Tuifua added a sack and interception each. Tyson had eight tackles, four for lost yardage.

Trailing 14-6, PCC would cut the lead to two points by halftime on a 12-yard TD pass from quarterback Caleb Fore to wide receiver Kemonte Bateman. PCC failed on the two-point conversion run.

PCC rallied around the return of running back Telvin McMillian to his former college. McMillian, who played for Hancock in 2008, rushed for a game-high 86 yards in 25 carries and scored one touchdown. He also played wildcat quarterback on one third-quarter series.

The Lancers opened the game by engineering a 17-play, 67-yard drive that took nearly eight minutes off the clock. McMillian's eighth carry of the series, a 3-yard touchdown run capped the time-consuming drive. Gonzalez saw his ensuing extra point attempt blocked by Christopher Wheeler as PCC led 6-0. Twice PCC converted fourth-and-short plays for first downs to keep the series going.

PCC's overall rushing game was strong with 44 attempts for 182 yards. Fore ran for 60 yards in 12 keepers while Ron Spears added 36 yards in 7 attempts and 67 yards in two kick returns.

For Hancock, Kelly gave his team a 14-6 lead on a first-quarter, 73-yard TD bomb to Scott Cathcart, and running in a 10-yard bootleg score in the second quarter.

The Lancers won for the first time in three series meetings v. Hancock. It is the 67th different community college that PCC has beaten in its history.

Pasadena hosts Los Angeles Valley College Saturday, Sept. 18 in a 6 p.m. kickoff at Robinson Stadium. Interim head coach Dennis Gossard is one win away from tying R. Frank Baker for most career head coaching football victories at PCC. Baker, the college's first football coach from 1925-1937, had 52 to Gossard's current 51 wins.

[Photo--Kimball Niumatalolo returns an interception 81 yards for a touchdown to clinch PCC football's second straight victory, 22-14, over Allan Hancock Saturday night, image by Richard Quinton.]

Release Date: 09/12/10
Robert Lewis, Sports Information
Phone: 626-585-7018, Email: rmlewis@pasadena.edu