May 28, 2024

OC Sports Zone: Community First

Portola players enjoy a week off and a 6-0 record

Portola Coach Peter Abe talks to his players after Friday’s victory over Northwood Friday. (Photo Tim Burt, OC Sports Zone)

Portola football players were happy to hear one of the comments during Coach Peter Abe’s post-game meeting Friday.

Abe said they earned some well deserved time off after extending their record to 6-0 with a 28-24 victory over Northwood Friday night.

“We look forward to watching the film and getting some guys rested up,” Abe said after the game. “I think that week is going to be good for us. I’m looking forward to getting back to the drawing board and finding a way to get another win after the bye and get some momentum going into league.”

Abe was pleased to see his team remain undefeated behind star running back Nova Kebeli, who had three touchdowns and rushed for a school record 268 yards. Kebeli continues to lead the county in rushing yards with 1,060 according to OC Varsity. He has 12 rushing touchdowns.

But the coach says there are areas the Bulldogs need to work on.

“We’re excited to get that win, but as we said before we are an imperfect being, we got to get out there and take a look at the things that didn’t go the way we wanted it to go. We will take that as coaches. I’m happy these guys fought to the end and I’m proud of that effort.”

Portola’s defense had four interceptions. Aiden Horn had two and Zephyr Suri and Patrick Sandoval had one each. Another player also made a big play for the Bulldogs on defense.

“We had a senior Jason Vo probably made the tackle of the game (on Northwood’s Adam Harper) when they got the ball to the 50 on that last kick-off return,” Abe said. “If he doesn’t make that play, we’re not in good enough position to put the game away.”

Abe said he hopes the defense continues to shine.

“That junkyard defense, I’m looking forward to those guys continuing to shut teams down when we need it,” Abe said. “Everything looks promising, I’m very excited for the future of this team this season and look forward to getting some much needed rest and then getting after it in one more prep game before league.”

Portola returns to action Friday, Oct. 8 with its final non-league game at University before opening Pacific Hills League play on Friday, Oct. 15 at Laguna Hills.

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