To put it simply, the Riverside City College football team put up video game numbers against the Orange Coast College Pirates on Saturday night. The Tigers etched a season-high 76 points on the board highlighted by 11 touchdowns and 723 total yards of offense thus leading to a commanding victory.
It was a no contest for the Pirates as Riverside dominated every facet of the game. In the Tiger's final guaranteed home game of the season, the Tigers threw for 559 yards and rushed for 164 yards. Nine touchdowns came through the air and a pair of scores came on the ground attack. Furthermore, the Tigers held the Pirates to 105 yards on offense while halting them to four completed passes for 24 yards and 1.9 yards-per-carry.
Offense was king as freshman quarterback Jacob Barlage earned his first start of the year and did not disappoint. He recorded season high numbers as he went 31-for-35 with 463 yards and eight passing touchdowns. He located five different wide receivers for a score and accomplished all of this in just three quarters.
His go-to weapon was sophomore wide receiver Rolandiss Whitener Jr. For the second time this season, Whitener Jr. has caught for over a bill as he recorded career-high marks with 127 yards and three receiving touchdowns. He was one reception shy of tying his season-best mark of eight, but settled for a game-high seven snags.
Sophomore wide receiver Giovanni Sanders also surpassed the century mark in receiving yards as he hauled in five grabs for 106 yards and a touchdown. Freshman Reggie Retzlaff found the end zone twice after hauling in six receptions for 94 yards. Freshman Kaleb Hervey and Thomas Kinslow each recorded touchdown receptions as well.
While the tandem quarterback system had boded well for the Tigers, a new-look tandem emerged tonight as freshman Tyler Thomas received some significant playing time in the fourth quarter. He impressed with the arm, but more with the legs. He carted the rock eight times for 93 yards and a score, while going 5-for-5 through the air for 96 yards and a touchdown. All marks acted as a career-high for him.
While the offense stole the show, the defense strung together one of their most impressive performances of the season. Freshman defensive end Edward Calhoun Jr. kept the consecutive takeaway streak alive with an interception marking Riverside's ninth-straight game recording a turnover. It acted as the first of his career.
Freshman Alex Navarro-Silva paced his squad with five tackles, while freshman Nathan Bolton and Manu Ta'a followed with four each. Freshman Randall Turner was a monster in the backfield by recording two sacks for a loss of 19 yards. Freshman Sicea Vito-Logoleo and sophomore Pinao Awai teamed up for a sack as well.
The Tigers (9-0, 4-0) will hit the road for the biggest game of the season next Saturday, November 16 as they face off against No. 3 Saddleback College. The winner will be crowned the National Central Division Champions and likely hold the top seed in the South for the playoffs.