October 10, 2003

Jaguars in ‘Shock And Awe’

Playoff chances fade after loss to Grossmont

By Jaime Cárdenas
SWC Sports Information Director

The Southwestern College football program is in a state of disbelief following Saturday’s 76-34 loss to Grossmont College in El Cajon.

The Jaguars (1-2, 2-3) are unable to explain, how the Griffins (3-0, 5-0) were able to put up a Grossmont record 76 points or how their defense allowed 819 yards.

“There is no way to explain it,” said Jaguars linebacker Myles Bush. “We broke down… we were taking it to them in the first half, then (in the second half) it looked like we didn’t even belong on the same field as them.”

The Jaguars scored first on Andre Buggs 26-yard scamper up the middle in the first quarter. On the next play, the Jags went for the two-point conversion but the play never developed after the muffed snap.

Grossmont would even things up two series later when Griffins quarterback Jarrod Jackson connected with Chris Mazzi for 41-yard touchdown pass. Kicker and wide receiver Todd Watkins gave the Griffins a one point lead on the PAT, the first of eight on the day. Watkins also had two field goals of 37 and 44 and caught 5 catches for 194 yards and one touchdown.

Their lead was short lived however.

On the ensuing kickoff David Bellinger returned a 97-yard kick to give the Jaguars back the lead. The Jaguars were riding high, but it would be the last time they would score until late in the third quarter. Grossmont, ranked No. 8 nationally by JC Grid-Wire and No. 2 in Southern California, rolled off 48 unanswered points to erase the Jags 12-7 lead en route to their record setting performance.

“We should have kept our composure,” eluded corner-back Anthony Lewis. “We should have kept on doing what we were doing.”

The Griffins, who did not score in the first quarter, put up 20, 35 and 21 points in the following quarters.

The Jaguars passing defense, which ranked tops in the conference heading into the game, gave up 432 yards and four touchdowns. They had allowed 528 yards the entire season prior to Saturday. The defense, which had tackling issues the entire game, also gave up 387 rushing yards.

Head coach Walt Justice called the Jaguars performance embarrassing.

“We have to feel embarrassment at the highest level,” he said. Adding that he had never felt so embarrassed in his life before, Justice realized that the teams playoffs hopes are dim.

“We have five games left. On Monday we will start preparing for Chaffey, I’ll know what type of team I have… we’ll find out if we have anything left.”

Bush, the defensive team captain, said the team can only go in two directions.

“We either will come together and take one step forward, or we will take three steps backwards.”

The Jags will try to keep their playoff hopes alive this Saturday at 5 p.m. when they host defending Foothill Conference champion Chaffey College (2-0, 3-1).

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