May 30, 2024

OC Sports Zone: Community First

PHOTOS: Santa Ana roars back with 54-17 win over Calvary Chapel

Santa Ana quarterback Sergio Torres (left) celebrates with teammate Jason Costa after Torres scored on a 21-yard TD run. (Photos: Fernando M. Donado, For OC Sports Zone)

Santa Ana’s football team made the most of its return to the field Thursday night after a two-week layoff.

The Saints, the defending Orange Coast League champions, came out firing on all cylinders to defeat Calvary Chapel 54-17 in the league opener at Segerstrom.

Santa Ana (4-1, 1-0) had one game called off due to COVID protocol and had a bye last week.

“It definitely looked like we haven’t been on the field for a while,” said Saints Coach Charlie TeGantvoort. “We had some rust that we have to clean up. Winning is great, but it’s about improving and it’s about getting better and we need to get a lot better if we want to accomplish our big goals and we have some really big goals for this team and for this season and we got to make sure we’re getting better every week, every day.”

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

Jason Costa led the charge for Santa Ana with 142 yards rushing and two touchdowns, all in the first half. With Santa Ana holding a 34-10 lead at halftime, TeGantvoort opted to keep Costa out. Saints running back Raul Alvarez had a big second half, scoring three touchdowns (two rushing, one receiving) and rushing for 104 yards.

But it was Costa who set the tone, scoring on a 48-yard TD run early in the second quarter to put the Saints ahead 14-3.

“We have some great talent and he’s definitely one of them,” TeGantvoort said. “We expect them to do well. But they need to get better and better and dominate.”

Costa, a senior, said he was happy to be back on the field.

“It was a relief to make sure we were still on the right track,” Costa said. “It was a long two weeks for us and we know we have a lot to stuff to work on still. Coming off of two weeks, we were a little rusty. We have a lot to work on tomorrow. I just want to thank my line, my line really did good today, I appreciate them a lot. If it weren’t for them, I wouldn’t be able to do anything. The energy was there from the beginning.”

Costa said he was concerned when the team had one game cancelled due to COVID protocol.

“It was a horrible feeling, I don’t want to feel it again,” he said.

Santa Ana also got a strong effort from sophomore quarterback Sergio Torres, who passed for 113 yards and three touchdowns and also rushed for one score. In the first quarter, he hooked up with Imanol Torres on a 7-yard TD pass.

Calvary Chapel (4-2) was led by starting quarterback Ian Capuano, who passed for 112 yards and a 46-yard touchdown pass to Keshawn Johnson in the first half. But the talented QB injured his throwing shoulder late in the first half and did not return.

“He’s out for a while, he was having a great game,” said Calvary Chapel Coach Pat McInally. “We thought we could through against them if we had the time and we were able to but their running game, we just couldn’t stop. We’re starting three basically JV kids on the line, we have a lot of injuries. But that’s all right, they’re a very good team.”

Johnson wound up with seven catches for 168 yards and also hauled in a 42-yard touchdown pass from back-up quarterback Benjamin Burns late in the game. Burns wound up throwing for 106 yards.

“I thought we called a good game, they were just better,” McInally said.

Santa Ana also got a big game from Raymond Casillas, who had five catches for 78 yards, including a 16-yard TD catch in the second quarter. Torres, the quarterback, also rushed for 64 yards on five carries, 21 coming on his TD run.

The Saints also had interceptions by MIchael Hughes and Damian Villanueva.


—Tim Burt, OC Sports Zone;