Dashnaw's five touchdowns lead SMC past Desert

Santa Monica College’s offense was at their best when playing from behind – and that alone may be a sign of good things to come.

Down 10-0 early, it took a while for the Corsairs offense to get going, but once they got started, they would not be stopped.

Fresh off his transfer from College of the Canyons, quarterback Jake Dashnaw made quite a first impression, completing 13-26 passes for 334 yards, and four touchdowns. He also added a one-yard touchdown run, totaling 5 touchdowns on the day.

Dashnaw completely dominated the second half with the help of wide receiver Kaelin Jones who finished the day with three catches for 74 yards and two touchdowns. But the reason the offense was still in the game to start the second half was the prolific SMC defense.

Down 10-7 in the first quarter, the SMC defense did exactly what they’re known for, as they forced a College of the Desert fumble at Desert’s own goal line, and recovered it for a touchdown. Recovering the ball in the end zone was freshman Jameal Baker.

Usually one defensive touchdown is all a team can ask for. But with five minutes left in the first half, the defense did it again as freshman Tony Gutiernez came up with an interception, and took it 34 yards for a touchdown.

“Both guys are good football players, and quality guys. They’re young, and they made some plays, and then they didn’t make plays, but luckily the plays they made were highlight type plays," said defensive coordinator Steve Garcia. “That’s our goal, to create turnovers, to get the ball back to the offense, or score on defense. We helped ourselves out, but there’s still a lot of work to be done to be a really good, quality defense in this conference.”

As the second half got started, so too did the SMC offense. Over the final two quarters SMC outscored Desert 26-9, thanks to three of Dashnaw’s four passing touchdowns, as well as a career high 61-yard touchdown run from running back Melvin Davis.

“It’s a blessing. Everyone was doing their job; I couldn’t do it without my linemen, and all my receivers downfield. It was my longest touchdown run so far, but hopefully I’ll have many more," said Davis.

In past seasons, it was either the defense or the offense that could be praised for saving the day. But In the end, it was the defense that kept the Corsairs close, and the offense that finished the job. This partnership between the offense, and the defense that was all too rare last season, might just be what the fans of SMC have been waiting for since the start of the current dynasty. But only time will tell.

The Corsairs will travel to San Diego next Saturday, as they gear up for a highly anticipated matchup against Southwestern College. Kickoff @ 6pm.