Eagles 18 - San Juan Hills 8

SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO, CA., August 19, 2022 – SMCHS took the field at “The Badlands” -- home of San Juan Hills -- for their 2022 season opener. The contest was the defacto “Game of the Week” in the county as it was dubbed so by the Orange County Register and broadcast on live television throughout many markets in the country. With a full house of over 2,600 strong, the Eagles found themselves in a dogfight as they couldn’t capitalize on several early opportunities and led only 5-0 at half.

The athleticism and skill of the Eagles was certainly on display as SMCHS fought back to prevail, 18-8. Jaxon Potter demonstrated his ability to be a real on the roll out, as he passed for 180 yards and hitting nearly 66.0 percent of his throws. He also scored a key touchdown with a sneak in the fourth quarter. Emmett Mosley’s skill to gain yards after the catch dazzled all as he made his first appearance for SMCHS and finished with nine receptions for 94 yards and a score. Skilled receivers Bain Eiseman and Niko Lopez proved to be deadly downfield for the opposition as they garnered long pass receptions of 35 and 36 yards respectively.

The SMCHS defense was at its best as it shutdown the Stallions with five sacks, 12 tackles for loss, one safety and one interception. San Juan’s quarterback, Michael Tollefson, one of their biggest offensive weapons, was limited to just 83 yards passing on six completions and 53 yards rushing on 15 carries. Three of the sackers included Noah Sulick, Ben Durham and Collins Acheampong. Durham also added the safety while Blake Wilson was credited with the pick. Wilson, a man of many skills, also punted for a 44.0-yard average, including a boot of 53 yards, and kicked a PAT. Perhaps the best defensive effort was turned in by Jacob Bower. The senior hybrid safety-linebacker contributed 16 total tackles (1 for loss), recovered a fumble, had one quarterback hurry and a half sack.

Santa Margarita 2 3 0 13 18
San Juan Hills 0 0 0 8 8

SM – Comestro Safety
SM – Schuster FG 42
SM – Potter 1 run (pass failed)
SJH – Bockler 5 pass from Tollefson (Land run)
SM – E. Mosley 19 pass from Potter (Schuster kick)

Rushing: SM - Fuimaono 6-18, Nash 7-15, S. Lendsey 3-13; SJH - Tollefson 17-25, Land 12-37
Passing: SM - Potter 14-22-0-180; SJH - Tollefson 6-11-1-78
Receiving: SM - E. Mosley 9-94, Eiseman 3-40; SJH - Bockler 3-26, Chase 2-48


Summary by Chuck Nan
Statistics by Shane Mielke


Santa Margarita football tops San Juan Hills in low-scoring battle

SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO – Santa Margarita outlasted San Juan Hills 18-8 in a penalty-filled high school football game Friday at San Juan Hills High.

The Eagles committed 14 penalties for 125 yards which stalled multiple drives.

Santa Margarita (1-0) did not score a touchdown until the fourth quarter. San Juan Hills (0-1) had a snap sail over the punter’s head and the Eagles took over possession on the San Juan Hills 10-yard line.

Quarterback Jaxon Potter capped the two-play scoring drive with a 1-yard touchdown run to give the Eagles an 11-0 lead early in the fourth.

San Juan Hills did not give up despite being held to under 70 yards of offense in the first three quarters. Michael “Butter” Tollefson threw a 40-yard screen pass to Colton Chase to set up a 6-yard touchdown pass to Brayden Bockler.

Sullivan Land converted the 2-point attempt on a run to cut Santa Margarita’s lead to 11-8 with just under seven minutes remaining in the game.

The Eagles responded with a scoring drive to put the game away. Potter scrambled and threw a 36-yard pass to Colorado State commit Niko Lopez to put the Eagles in the red zone.

Two plays later, Potter threw a 19-yard touchdown pass to Servite transfer Emmett Mosley to give Santa Margarita an 18-8 lead.

Potter, an Alabama-Birmingham commit, completed 13 of 21 passes for 176 yards and a touchdown. Mosley caught nine passes for 95 yards with a touchdown.

Lopez had two of the biggest catches of the game for the Eagles and finished with 71 yards on two catches.

Santa Margarita’s defense made it difficult for San Juan Hills to move the ball. The Eagles had five sacks with Ben Durham leading the way with two. Michigan commit Collins Acheampong added a sack and so did LeVar Talley and Noah Sulick.

The Eagles held Tollefson, a highly-touted sophomore, to just 83 yards passing on six completions. Tollefson was the leading rusher for San Juan Hills with 53 yards on 15 carries.

Talley, Jacob Bower and Chris Furlong had multiple tackles for a loss for Santa Margarita.

Blake Wilson had an interception for Santa Margarita in the second quarter, which set up a 42-yard field goal by Mason Schuster to give the Eagles a 5-0 lead.

The Eagles scored early in the first quarter on a safety when the San Juan Hills punter bobbled the ball in its own endzone and was brought down by a host of Eagles tacklers led by Durham.

Weston Port and Jake Javorsky each had tackles for a loss for San Juan Hills.

Santa Margarita will host Norco at Saddleback College on Friday, Aug. 26.

San Juan Hills will play Cypress at Western High on Thursday, Aug. 25.

By Michael Huntley
Friday, August 19, 2022
The Orange County Register