June 15, 2024

OC Sports Zone: Community First

PHOTOS: Northwood takes control in first half and tops Portola in PCL opener

Eddie Petrushin reaches out for a Northwood touchdown Friday night vs. Portola. (Photos courtesy Mark Bausman).

By ALEX SUAREZ

For OC Sports Zone

Northwood High School’s football team scored 13 unanswered points in 43 seconds to close out the first half and went on to defeat Portola 35-7 in a Pacific Coast League opener Friday night at Irvine Stadium.

“It was our first league game and that wasn’t the score I was expecting,” said Northwood Coach JC Clarke. “Our kids played hard.” 

Northwood (4-4, 1-0) was led by junior wide receiver Eddie Petrushin, who had 56 yards on 10 catches. Petrushin opened the scoring with a 14-yard touchdown run late in the first quarter. 

Junior wide receiver/kicker Cole Hidalgo extended the Timberwolves’ lead with a 35-yard touchdown catch early in the fourth quarter. 

“It was a nice catch and a perfect ball thrown by Eddie (Ma, the quarterback),” Hidalgo said. 

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

Senior Lucas Trausch finished the game with 63 rushing yards on 14 carries and 17 receiving yards, contributing a rushing and receiving touchdown. 

“We put him in at running back last week and he’s really upped our deal,” Clarke said.

Senior quarterback Eddie Ma threw for 154 yards and two passing touchdowns for Northwood.

Northwood, the defending PCL champion, will aim to carry the success from Friday’s game into next week’s matchup against Laguna Hills at Irvine Stadium.

“We know Laguna (Hills) is really good,” Clarke said. “We’re going to have to be at our best.”

Portola (4-4, 0-1) initially moved the ball effectively early but faced challenges later in the game and will look to build on that going forward against Dana Hills next Friday at home. 

“I think we were hanging in there the first quarter and a half,” Portola Coach Peter Abe said. “Halfway through the second quarter we had way too many mistakes. We dug ourselves into a hole and could never get out of it.”

Senior quarterback Rocky Palacio. Palacio tied the game for Portola at 7-7 with a 9-yard touchdown run, a designed run for the quarterback. Palacio completed eight passes for 45 yards and rushed for 63 on seven carries. 

Senior wide receiver Davis Gurski led the Bulldogs with 18 receiving yards.