VALENCIA – Saugus quarterback Zack Gauthier rushed for 126 yards and two touchdowns, but it wasn’t enough against visiting Westlake at College of the Canyons on Thursday night.
Saugus lost to Westlake, 42-20, in a matchup of two of the top teams in the CIF Southern Section Northern Division. Saugus is ranked fourth in the Northern Division. Westlake is fifth. Gauthier said part of the reason his team lost was because Saugus had three days to prepare for the game. Westlake had a bye last week and almost two weeks to get ready for Saugus.
Westlake scored first. Quarterback Nick Isham connected with Tre’shon Wilson for an 8-yard touchdown. It was the first of three touchdown catches for Wilson.
But Saugus stormed back, scoring on a drive that chewed up nearly eight minutes. Gauthier ran the ball in from three yards out, but Saugus opted to go for a 2-point conversion and came up short. It was one of a few questionable calls by the Saugus coaching staff.
Saugus tried two onside kicks and did not attempt to kick a point after touchdown, rather trying for two points after every touchdown the team scored. Saugus did not recover either onside kick attempt and converted on only one of three 2-point tries.
Westlake rattled off 28 straight points in the second and third quarters to build a 35-6 lead. Wilson and Nelson Spruce each had short touchdown receptions. Dallas Clayton scored on a 37-yard run and Isham, playing safety, scored on a 70-yard interception return.
Saugus finally ended its scoring drought on a 3-yard run by fullback Adrian Cruz. Cruz, a starting inside linebacker, had only one carry in the game.
Gauthier scored the final touchdown for Saugus on a 2-yard run with just under six minutes to play in the game. He finished with 25 carries for 126 yards and two touchdowns. He was also 12-for-17 passing for 119 yards.
Saugus wide receiver Manny Patron caught a team-high six passes for 58 yards.
Westlake used a two-quarterback attack and amassed 244 yards through the air. Isham completed 15-of-17 passes for 172 yards and four touchdowns. Michael Bercovici was 9-of-13 for 72 yards.
Tavior Mowry rushed 13 times for 102 yards for Westlake. Clayton had three carries for 42 yards including a 37-yard touchdown. Spruce caught six passes for 93 yards and a touchdown.
Follow the Footill League football teams on Facebook.