Sunny Hills football dominates Buena Park in 49-8 victory; takes six-game winning streak into Oct. 18 showdown vs. La Habra


Running back and defensive back junior David Harris avoids a Buena Park player in one of his carries during the Oct. 11 game against Buena Park High School. The former Buena Park Junior High School student scored his first touchdown of the season — a six-yard scamper into the end zone. Photo by Paul Yasutake

Andrew Park, Arts & Entertainment Editor

This story was updated on Oct. 15 with quotes from more players.

The Sunny Hills High School football team maintained its winning streak Oct. 11, blowing out its second Freeway League opponent of the season in a 49-8 victory against Buena Park High School.

“It was great to get the big win,” Sunny Hills head football coach Peter Karavedas said. “Our kids were physical, and that is always a good thing.”

Coming into the game at Buena Park High School stadium, the Lancers had dominated Sonora High School the week before in a 45-7 homecoming game win on the same turf field.

Considered an away game against Buena Park (1-6), the Lancers needed to make sure they did not take the Coyotes lightly.

But that was easier said than done as neither team scored in the first quarter, the first time an opposing defense had shut out Sunny Hills’ offense in the opening quarter since the Sept. 13 matchup against Brea Olina High School (4-3).

However, quarterback senior Luke Duxbury overcame the offensive slump during the beginning of the second quarter with a touchdown pass to running back and defensive back sophomore Brandon Roberts.

“The play call was an inside vert, so I knew I would have to know where the safety was playing,” Duxbury said. “I had my eyes on my receiver, so I tossed it up, and he came down with it.”

The third touchdown of the second quarter happened when Duxbury handed the ball off to running back and defensive back junior David Harris, who bulled his way through some Buena Park defenders before scoring from the six yard line.

“When I ran with the ball, I saw that there were already a few people there,” Harris said. “I did not give up because we always try to make the touchdown whenever we are already so close.”

Going into halftime, the Lancers had a comfortable 21-0 lead and added another touchdown in the beginning of the third quarter.

But the shutout ended during the middle of the third quarter when the Coyotes scored a touchdown and succeeded on a two-point conversion attempt to make the score 28-8. The Lancers then drove down the field for another touchdown drive, building their lead to 35-8.

By the last quarter, the Lancers’ defense continued to shut out the Coyotes, while their offense with mostly backup players scored another two touchdowns, ending the game 49-8.

Despite the fact that the Lancers scored in the 40s again and held their opponents to single digits for the second game in a row, Karavedas acknowledged his players’ performance did not meet his expectations.

“We got some work to do for our next games,” he said. “We had too many penalties and fumbles and became a little sloppy at times.”

Throughout the game, Sunny Hills received seven penalties costing the team 121 yards compared with the Sonora game in which the Lancers lost only 41 yards on three yellow flags.

Running back and linebacker junior Vince Silva scored on two rushing touchdowns – the first one being an 11-yard scamper into the end zone in the second quarter while the second score came in the third quarter from 28 yards out. However, he was still not satisfied with how his team played.

“At the beginning of the game, we were sluggish,” Silva said. “We were just playing down to our opponents’ level who were worse than us when we should be playing higher than their level.”

And that’s the attitude the Lancers will need when they face perennial Freeway League champion the La Habra Highlanders (5-2) Oct. 18. Both teams will be undefeated in Freeway League play going into the matchup at Buena Park stadium.

“They are the best team in this league,” Karavedas said. “We need to stay focused in order to win and hopefully make it to the playoffs.”

He intends to emphasize with his players who their opponent will be instead of their six-game winning streak.

“We do not dwell on what happened in the past regardless of the outcome,” the coach said. “We never want to think about what is behind, but only what is in front of us.”