May 29, 2024

OC Sports Zone: Community First

PHOTOS: CdM holds off charge from Cypress to capture Battle at the Bay Tourney

Corona del Mar took the championship of the tournament Friday. (Photos: OC Sports Zone, Tim Burt).

Corona del Mar’s inaugural Battle at the Bay Passing Tournament Friday was more than about trophies.

Players on the eight high school football teams all received T-shirts, but there were no trophies handed to the tournament champion Corona del Mar or the second place finisher Cypress.

CdM, behind talented senior quarterback David Rasor, defeated Cypress 30-14 in the championship game and the players of both teams congratulated each other at midfield before posing for pictures.

The seven on seven tournament was about showcasing the passing talents of the eight public school programs in 25 minute games before a few hundred fans on a picture-perfect day at CdM.

“We invited eight schools who are friends,” said CdM Coach Dan O’Shea, who organzed the event. “Everybody knows how to play right, there are no fights, we want to keep everyone healthy, let’s all go out compete and try to get better together, representing Orange County public high school football and that’s really important to us to be in line with the public schools who share the same values and same culture and the same approach to seven on seven.

“Now-a-days sometimes they make it about the competition and winning a trophy, we didn’t hand out a trophy, it’s about trying to get better together.”

To see the slide show, click on the first photo:

Rasor capped a big day with four touchdown passes in the final against Cypress, three to 6-3 senior tight end Cooper Hoch, who like Rasor is uncommitted so far but attracting interest from college coaches.

“It was huge for us, last weekend we were up at Cal Poly and we won that tournament as well and we carried that confidence into this week of practice and we carried it into the game today and we played really well,” Rasor said.

“We played consistent football, we took what the defense was giving us and Cooper played really well and our whole team played really well and it was exciting to get to play against a different opponent with different colored jerseys and see how we stack up in Orange County.”

Corona del Mar also defeated Aliso Niguel 23-7, Cypress 29-23 and Tesoro 37-35. CdM lost to La Habra 29-28.

Cypress made some progress during the day, playing CdM close in the first meeting of the day between the two teams. The Centurions also defeated La Habra 23-21, Aliso Niguel 23-0 and San Clemente 32-14 to earn a rematch with Corona del Mar in the finals.

“It was a great day for us, I’m excited about the way it went today for us,” said Cypress Coach Rick Feldman. “We competed all day and they’re a great football team. Coach O’Shea does a great job and he put on a great tournament. We’re just happy we were able to be competitive and feel like we left here better than when we got here.”

Junior quarterback Aidan Houston, who played all of the games, was solid all day for the Centurions.

“He did a real good job, this is his first real competition for us,” Feldman said.

“I felt it was a great showing by all the teams, there was a lot of competition out here, I felt pretty good with our performance, we really came together as a team and I know all us were gassed, we were going both ways, a lot of the receivers, I’m just so proud of them and so proud of how we came together in that last game even though we were down,” Houston said. “God really give us the strength to keep going and keep pursuing what we had to do.

“Even though we came up short, I’m really proud of how we responded and how we fought the adversity.”

Cypress was missing all-county wide receiver Matthew Morrell, who was out with an injury, Feldman said.

Foothill and Dana Hills also competed in the tournament.

Related stories:

CdM’s dynamic passing game on full display

Cypress meets the challenge at Battle at Bay Tourney

—-Tim Burt, OC Sports Zone; timburt@ocsportszone.com