(East L.A. College, Weingart Stadium)—The Garfield Bulldogs won their fourth straight Eastern League crown and with it, claimed the bragging rights for another year over their longtime archrivals, the Roosevelt Rough Riders. This brings us all directly to the review of the 85th Annual East L.A. Classic, that recently took place on November 1st at East L.A. College’s Weingart Stadium. More than 17,000 avid, faithful fans witnessed the football game of course, plus all of the accompanying pageantry and what it means to be a high school student who attends either one of these educational institutions that represent the proud traditions and vibrant communities of Boyle Heights and East L.A.
With a new, and most-welcomed feature regarding the contest, a total of more than 2,750 subscribers and highly interested East L.A. Classic fans from many East L.A. communities and Beyond, were able to view the historic first-ever “Live Streaming” of the entire pre-game festivities, the Roosevelt Homecoming Court presentation, the game itself, which included the enthusiastic and competitive half-time Cheer and Marching Band programs from both schools. This was all made possible via the permission of the Roosevelt Administration, the NFHSNetwork.Com platform, and its Affiliate, East L.A. Sports Scene Productions, as they all combined efforts to better promote local high school sports programs, whether they occur in East Los Angeles, the CIF/L.A. City Section, or Southern California, as well as from every State of the Union. For details on how you can become a subscriber to “Live Streaming,” and the upcoming playoffs, go to NFHSNetwork.Com or EastLASportsScene.Com.
Note From The Editor: For those of you who would like to see our full and complete production in Video on Demand (VOD) format, we advise you to go to our website, EastLASportsScene.com and subscribe as a new customer to the NFHSNetwork.Com. Just follow the directions for new subscribers and you’ll be set for your own access to all of the “Live Streamed” games that we’ve produced this season plus hundreds of others from other cities and states across the country.
Game Summary: (1st Half)—The first quarter was scoreless as both teams performed like two heavyweight boxers feeling each other out in a title fight. The first two scores of the game came on field goals from the unorthodox Bulldog punter-placekicker, #16/SR/Fabian Muñoz-Rodriguez, which came at the 10:29 and 6:19 minutes marks in the 2nd quarter. Then, just before the half ended, after a Rider fumble recovery, #1/RB-CB/SR/P.J. Garcia slammed it in from 3 yards out for the score. Their PAT was missed. And so, the Bulldogs went into their locker room with a (12-0) lead. To Roosevelt’s credit, they managed to mount a good drive early in the period, but once the Bulldog defense tightened up, figured out the double wing-T formation, and recovered two costly Rider fumbles, there would be no further threats posed by the Home Team.
(2nd Half)—The third quarter would give the Garfield fans two more scores in the game. Each score produced tremendous applause from their 9,000 fans in attendance. The first came at the 10:11 mark when P.J. Garcia punched it in on a 3 yard dive play going through the gaping hole that was created by his huge “O” linemen. Then, when the Riders fumbled for the third time, as quick as a lightning bolt striking an object, #6/WR-DB/SR/Khyren Ross scooped it up at their 40 yard line and then breezed into the end zone with a celebratory front-forward flip that was penalized on the ensuing kick-off. This would be the final score in the game as both teams battled to a scoreless 4th quarter. For the Riders, they managed to gain just several first downs in the half but could never mount a sustained scoring drive. And, when it appeared that the Riders were finally moving the ball with momentum, the Bulldog secondary slacked off on #5/QB/SR/Andres Flores’ first pass attempt of the game, a huge 30 yard gainer, but it was nullified by a penalty with an ineligible player downfield. All in all, it was a very long and frustrating night for the Rough Riders who simply could never recover from a total of four fumbles that all came at the costliest of times, resulting in very favorable field positions for their opposition to start their drives.
FINAL SCORE: GARFIELD 25 ROOSEVELT 0
2019 Playoff Pictures:
(Garfield): Over the weekend, the CIF/L.A. City Section published its 2019 Playoff pairings. Returning to the (8) team “Open” Division for the second consecutive year, will be the Bulldogs (8-2)-(6-0), who drew a #5 seed. They will travel to the San Fernando Valley to take on the Birmingham Patriots on Friday, 11/15 at 7 pm, in a first round match-up. Do keep in mind that the Marine League’s Narbonne Gauchos were recently, and heavily penalized by the Section office for a number of violations stemming back to 2018. When asked for his reaction to the severity of the penalties levied against the Gauchos, Garfield’s Head Coach, Lorenzo Hernandez, stated after Friday’s “Classic” during a media interview, “It’s unfortunate what happened, but now this will be an ‘Open’ opportunity for everyone,“ signifying that the playing field has become much more leveled for these playoffs.
(Roosevelt): Although they may be bowed, but not broken, after their sub-par and losing performance in the “Classic,” the Rough Riders, (7-3)-(5-1), still have much to celebrate and be very happy about as they will be hosting a first-round playoff game for the second consecutive year, this time in Division I, instead of Division II. Their designated opponent will be the #10 seeded, Cleveland Cavaliers, (5-4)-(2-2), representing the West Valley League, who come in on Friday, 11/8. The Riders will be looking forward to a deep playoff run under their second-year Head Coach, Aldo Parral. Kick-off is set for 7 pm on the NFHSNetwork.Com’s, Affiliate, EastLASportsScene.Com.
To see the complete CIF/L.A. City Section Divisional playoff brackets, click here.