Redlands East Valley scored three touchdowns in the first seven and half minutes of the game and went on to score four more before the half, adding up to a 48-0 win over Yucaipa to capture the Citrus Belt League championship at Thunderbird Field on Thursday. Yucaipa had already clinched a playoff game and finished the regular season with a 9-1 record.
“Did I expect a game like this — no I didn’t. We got outclassed in every aspect of the game. That’s the way things happen sometimes,” said Yucaipa coach Justin Price.
REV (10-0) scored during its first seven possessions starting with a 97-yard touchdown return on the opening kickoff by Jamal Ellis, followed by three rushing touchdowns by Yucaipa resident Taylor Thompson. REV quarterback Austin Decoud added touchdown passes of 21 yards to Jesse Riley and 42 yards to Zack Brown. The scoring was capped by a 60-yard interception touchdown return by Daniel Gonzales off a pass by Clayton Leach-Mead to make it 48-0 with five minutes left in the half.
“Hopefully, we forget about this and get ready for the playoffs. It will be a whole new season,” said Leach-Mead, who called REV ‘s defense fast and physical. “We came out flat and couldn’t put anything together.” According to most high school polls, REV is rated in the top-15 statewide. “They deserve it. They’re well coached,” said Leach-Mead, who led the T-Birds with 83 total yards.
Sophomore quarterback Billy Gustason directed Yucaipa’s most effective drive of the game, but was intercepted at the REV one-yard line at 1:39 left in the contest.
Dakota Smith ran for 29 yards on three carries during the 77-yard drive and Brandon Scott hauled in an 18-yard reception. Scott caught a 27-yard pass from Leach-Mead in the first quarter.
REV’s Decoud led all rushers with 94 yards on six carries, most coming on a 61-yard run in the first quarter. Thompson accumulated 91 yards on seven carries to go with his three touchdowns. “I didn’t expect the game to be like that. The better team won,” said Decoud.
REV coach Kurt Bruich credited his strong defense and well versed offense.
“If we have time to prepare, we can do great things against anybody,” said Bruich, whose team won its third consecutive CBL title.
“REV has been in lot of these big games and they have the experience to know what it takes to win. We still have to get over the hump,” said Price. “I didn’t say much at the half. None of that playing for pride stuff. We wanted to come out in the second half with our health and give ourselves a good opportunity in the playoffs. We couldn’t do anything tonight. It didn’t go good right from the start and it snowballed. Give REV credit.”
The game was delayed 30 minutes while Yucaipa standout offensive lineman Matt Parrish suffered an apparent broken arm and was taken to the hospital as a precaution. Defensive back Steven Best went out with a dislocated shoulder.
“This was kind of embarrassing to play like this in front of 7,000 people,” said Yucaipa defender Trevor Glaser.
“It was kind of shocking when that fast kid (Ellis) took the kickoff for a touchdown. We’ll clear our heads, put this one behind us and get ready for the playoffs. Hey, 9-1 and second place in the CBL isn’t too bad. It’s been a long time since we’ve been this good. We made history.”
Yucaipa assistant Robert Guillen agreed that 9-1 isn’t that bad. “The kids had high expectations tonight, but still made history.”
Guillen said that when REV took the opening kickoff for the touchdown, “it seemed to suck the energy out of us.” He said that REV was physical and made you work.
“Cal Preps has them ranked #7 in the state and they deserve that ranking.”
Yucaipa will play North High (9-1) in the first round of the CIF-SS Inland Division play-offs on Friday. The game will be played at Riverside Community College.
Hall of Fame announcement
The Yucaipa High Hall of Fame class of 2011 was announced at half-time. It included: Keith Jeske (1968) - two time All-League in basketball and football; Jim Mann (‘71) -Lettered in golf and basketball, where he was two-time All-League, league MVP, and All-CIF; Pat McLeod (‘85) -basketball, baseball, football All-League, Ken Hubbs nominee. Quarterbacked YHS to first CIF final; Stacy Stout (-91) -Four-year league swim champ. Four-time team MVP. Placed in top-3 in CIF finals four years. Became UC Irvine’s 1991 top swimmer; Matt Carpenter (‘92)-Two time All-CIF soccer player and swimmer. League MVP in soccer. Was an All-American swimmer at University of Redlands, where he holds numerous records; The entire 1991 baseball team was inducted since it was the first Yucaipa team to win a CIF championship.
Jeff Stout’s team finished with a 25-5 record.