ARTICLE & VIDEO BY TYLER HENDRICKSON
A pair of key turnovers left Lakewood (0-2) wondering what might have been against rival Mayfair (3-0) on Friday night, as the visiting Monsoons spoiled Lakewood’s home opener with a 20-6 victory, retaining the Milk Bucket trophy.
“(Tonight) was good for us as just our second game together as a group,” said Lakewood head coach Michael Christensen. “They played hard and I was proud of that. That’s what we’re trying to build on.”
Sebastian Kronberger rushed for 105 yards on 21 carries for the Lancers, but the Monsoons were able to have more success on the ground, gaining 188 yards on the ground. Tstrong Mataele ran for 126 yards on 19 totes to lead Mayfair, and Justen Walker chipped in 44 yards on nine carries with a pair of touchdowns.
The teams combined for just 26 total yards in the first quarter and neither offense picked up a first down in the opening 12 minutes. Things changed quickly in the second quarter as Mayfair went deep on their first play. Quarterback Joshua Calvin hooked up with Jordan Brown for a 97-yard touchdown pass to put the Monsoons on top, 6-0. Mayfair would drive and score on its next possession, as Justen Walker punched it in from 10 yards out, making it 12-0 Mayfair.
The Lancers were set to answer as Jakob Lemieux’s 52-yard punt return had Lakewood at the Mayfair 8-yard-line with 54 seconds until halftime. However, a fumble at the goal line left Lakewood off the scoreboard and trailing 12-0 at the break.
Lakewood put a methodical scoring drive together in the third quarter, running 17 plays (14 runs) to cover 71 yards, culminating in a one-yard touchdown plunge by quarterback Gevani McCoy on the second play of the fourth quarter. The Lancers took over 10 minutes off the clock, making it a 12-6 game with 11:29 to play.
However, the Monsoons had the answer on the ensuing touchdown drive, which ended in Walker’s second touchdown, putting the game away with under four minutes to play.
Next on the schedule, Mayfair will take on Santa Margarita at Trabuco Hills while Lakewood will host Corona del Mar next Friday.