(Pasadena, Ca) – Facing a must-win situation for Muir has been old hat since falling to 1-3 in league. Since then every week has been a playoff game for the Mustangs who needed to rally back with wins against Glendale and Hoover to setup the battle for the final postseason bid against longtime rival Pasadena at the Rose Bowl in front of an estimated crowd of 4,200.
“No one expected Muir and Pasadena to be in the playoffs this year,” said Mustangs head coach Ken Howard. “It has been a playoff atmosphere and the kids are prepared to play in the post season.”
Muir was not only able to win the “Turkey Tussle”, but dominated the Bulldogs on the ground to win convincingly, 32-12. The victory was the Mustangs 11th straight in the rivalry.
“You have to bring your ‘A’ game on every play in this type of rivalry” said Howard about the Mustangs dominance against the Bulldogs.
There was no need telling Muir senior running backs Eddie Tripp and Ricky Vaughns how important it was to knock off the resurgent Pasadena football program as both ran for over 100 yards in each half.
Tripp ran wild on an over-pursuing Pasadena defense for 104 yards and scored on a seven-yard isolation run play before leaving with an injury in the second quarter. Vaughns filled in admirably running for 134 yards in the second half to milk the clock and secure the victory.
Mustang’s senior quarterback Jarron Williams (nine of 19 for 168 yards) had his “senior” moment, accounting for four touchdowns on the evening.
The Bulldogs were also stymied on offense in the first half as they only mustered 64 total yards on 17 offensive plays with 52 coming on Nick Escoe’s first rush on the night for a touchdown on their first possession.
Escoe’s score was on the Pasadena opening drive that was extended on a fourth and six gamble as Kevin Phillips ran a fake punt for the required yardage.
After that it was all Muir as Williams would answer on back-to-back drives with a couple of two-yard runs and Tripp would score on a seven-yard run on their third drive of first half.
The second half was no kinder to the Bulldogs as they were unable to muster any offensive penetration as they failed to get past the 50-yard in the third quarter.
The Mustangs on the other hand were able to extend the lead on two passing touchdowns by Williams for scores of eight yards to Lawrence Phillips and 28-yards to Karl Holmes.
The Bulldogs would add a touchdown early in the fourth on Escoe’s second score of the night from 16-yards out.
“It is hard right now to recollect on how positive this season has been,” Pasadena head coach Mike McFarland said about the season and game. “I have to give my hat off to Muir. They ran it down our throats.”
PASADENA 6-0-0-6 12
MUIR 12-8-14-0 34
P – Nick Escoe 52 run (pass fail)
M – Jarron Williams 2 run (kick block)
M – Willliams 2 run (kick miss)
M – Eddie Tripp 7 run (Williams run)
M – Lawrence Phillips 8 pass from Williams (Jorge Chavarria kick)
M – Karl Holmes 28 pass from Williams (Chavarria kick)
P – Escoe 16 run (run failed)