Reaching 100 total career touchdowns, quarterback Darin Miller led the Orcutt Academy Spartans to a 57-10 win over Academy of Careers and Exploration (ACE) War Eagles on Friday at Pirates Stadium in Santa Ynez.
“Honestly, coming in my freshman year I didn’t expect the team and myself to be where we are today. I’m pretty surprised of the team and myself,” Miller said on his accolade.
Miller crossed the 100-touchdown for the Spartans (6-1, 1-0 Mt. Pinos League) milestone as the second quarter ended, connecting with wide receiver Aiden Heller for 65-yard pass on the first play from scrimmage following missed field goal by the War Eagles (3-2).
“That’s a nice accolade for him,” Orcutt Academy coach Doug May said. May was unable to confirm if Miller set a new school record with the mark.
The senior quarterback finished with three touchdowns, rushing for a 2-yard score midway through the opening frame and a 65-yard sprint in the third quarter following a 5-yard sack by Spartans Winston Harris forcing the War Eagles to punt.
“On the 65-yard touchdown pass, I went to coach and told him we had to run this play. We ran it and we scored,” Miller said. “Same thing on the run, we ran it and scored.”
Miller racked up 173 total yards, 75 yards rushing on 5 carries and 68 yards passing on 3 attempts. The Spartans quarterback now has 101 career end zone strikes.
“It was a team effort and Miller knows that,” May said. “He’s a great team leader and a heck of a player too. He’s one of our guys that we can count on and the other guys rally around him.”
Taking the opening kickoff, Orcutt Academy didn’t waste time driving 65 yards for the first score of the contest. Taking three minutes and 47 seconds to push down field, the Spartans' drive was almost killed on the first series when faced with a fourth down.
Converting the fourth down, the drive capped off with a 25-yard Jared Sutton touchdown run. Sutton finished with 79 yards on the ground on 5 carries.
The War Eagles quickly bounced back after the Spartans score, driving 65 yards in 1 minute 54 seconds to even the score a 7-7. The 16-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Reese Fisler to wide receiving Jacob Wright. Fisler also connected with Kaleb Hernandez for a 31-yard pass on the drive.
“That was a well coached team,” May said. “They came prepared and ready to play. They had some guys that were injured but hey were scrappers.”
The Spartans kept the pace going quickly, striking back for another score led Miller. Sutton had a 34-yard carry, his longest of the game, to move Orcutt Academy down field. Two-yards from goal-line, Miller took the ball in on a quarterback keeper for his first touchdown and connected with Heller for the 2-point conversion.
Trailing Orcutt Academy 15-7 with less than a minute in the first, the War Eagles looked tightened the score when Kaleb Hernandez recovered the Spartans’ Dominic Nattell fumble.
Unable to find the end zone, ACE head coach turned to kicker Lane Kast for the score. Kast booted a 31-yard field goal to cut the Spartans lead to 15-10 after one quarter.
The remaining three quarters were a scoring clinic by Orcutt Academy’s offense as the War Eagles struggled gaining yardage on the Spartans defense.
Shutting out ACE for the remainder of the contest, Orcutt Academy tacked on an additional 42 points in three quarters.
The Spartans’ running backs Bryce Coefield and Eddie Lundberg each finished with two touchdowns.
Scoring his first career touchdown in the second half, Coefield had a big fourth quarter for the Spartans. Coefield, a sophomore, had two touchdowns in the final frame and a forced fumble that was recovered by the Spartans.
Coefield found the end zone for the first time on a 10-yard run that put the Spartans up 51-10. Jumping back onto defense, Coefield knocked the ball loose near the line of scrimmage and then returned to the back field on offense.
The sophomore running backs crossed the goal-line with two-minute left on a 31-yard run. Coefield finished with 49 yards on 4 carries.
Running back Eddie Lundberg also finished with two rushing touchdowns for the Spartans. Lundberg broke loose for a 51-yard strike early in the second and again for a 16-yard carry for the first score of the third quarter.
Lundberg led the Spartans with 119 yards on 8 carries, averaging 14.9 yards per carry.
Ranked second in the CIF Southern Section 8-man division 1 poll, the Spartans host the Thatcher Toads Friday at Santa Maria High School. The Eagles return home to host the Lucerne Valley Mustangs.
VCA 44, Maricopa 6
The Lions rolled past the Indians as Adam Aldana carried the ball 10 times for 178 yards.
Trenton Lane added 14 carries for 125 yards for VCA. Ethan McCoy had five carries and 34 yards.
The Lions scored 30 points in the first quarter, seven more in the second and third and they scored in the fourth.
Aldana also recovered two fumbles and a had a total of four touchdowns.
McCoy had a score, as did Lane.