SMC football season opens with a tough loss

Santa Monica College’s 2012 season opener ended in disappointment after the defense gave up a late score in the game, costing a 31-28 loss against Mt. San Jacinto Saturday afternoon. The Corsairs’ defense was unable to stop Eagles’ running back Superiorr Reid who rushed for 269 yards and a touchdown for the game.

“We made too many fundamental mistakes,” interim head coach Steve Garcia said. “That should not happen.”

Head coach Gifford Lindheim served a self-imposed one-game suspension after last year’s postgame brawl with East Los Angeles College in the American Bowl.

The Eagles jumped out to an 11-0 lead after a 35-yard field goal, and quarterback Tim Morovick connected with wide receiver Jamion Lindsey for a 15-yard score and a 2-point conversion in the first quarter. The Corsairs responded after quarterback Alfonso Medina found wide receiver Reggie Mitchell for a 40-yard touchdown. On the ensuing drive, Medina connected with running back Myles Johnson for a touchdown, taking a 14-11 lead into the half.

The Corsairs went scoreless on offense in the third quarter, and gave up a pair of Eagles touchdowns, trailing 25-14 going into the fourth quarter. Johnson gave SMC some life after he scored on a 5-yard run, closing the gap 25-21. The Corsairs defense came up big after cornerback Ricardo Wright intercepted a pass at the Eagles’ 47-yard line. Three plays later, Medina threw his third and final touchdown to tight end Dominique Bierra for a 6-yard score taking a 28-25 lead with eight minutes left in the fourth quarter.

After the touchdown, it seemed all the momentum was pointed toward the Corsairs’ sideline. The Eagles took over at their own 27-yard line and marched all the way to the Corsairs’ 20-yard line when Morovick found tight end Tyler Henderson for a 20-yard touchdown, taking a 31-28 lead with four minutes left in the game.

After the Eagle go-ahead score, the subsequent Corsairs’ drive stalled at midfield, failing to convert a fourth down attempt, and turning the ball over on downs with 4:05 left on the clock.

The Corsairs hope to even their record at Chaffey College on Saturday.