By Larry Weiner
Special to the Observer 

Centaurs Undefeated in Passing Tournament Pool Play


After winning their first two passing tournaments, the Culver City Centaurs entered one of the biggest and most prestigious tourneys of the summer--the "Bonita Air Assault" in the San Gabriel Valley.

It is such a big tournament that it is played over two days. To win, it takes a combination of talent, luck and depth: Making the finals requires five games one day and five more the next.

In the first game, the Cents played Glendora and blew them out, 52-18. The Centaurs were on fire, even though Glendora is a top-ranked team.

All three Centaur quarterbacks played and Culver was up 33-0 before Glendora put its first points on the board. Sophomore Zevi Eckhaus started at QB and threw for three touchdowns.

Senior Tee Barnes threw for two TDs and Nick Lucero, a junior, threw for three.

The Centaurs played the Los Altos Conquerors in the second game. Quarterback Eckhaus played the entire game and threw for four TDs in a nail-biter that ended in a 24-24 tie. Those scoring touchdowns were Jamal Glaspie, Josh Ford, Tanner Duve, and Dominic Tatum.

In the next game, the Cents played the Norco JV's and all three QBs played. They won 18-0, as the offense sputtered but the defense did not allow a first down in the entire game.

Eckhaus threw for two touchdowns and Lucero threw one. Glaspie scored two TDs and Duve added one.

In a close defensive battle in the fourth game, the Cents faced the perennial league champion Northview Vikings.

The Centaurs started out on the wrong foot in the first series, when Eckhaus threw an interception. Northview stormed back with a touchdown and took an early 8-0 lead.

Eckhaus next threw a touchdown to Chris Miller to close the gap to 8-6.

Again Northview answered with a touchdown to make it 14-6 halfway through the contest. Two series later Eckhaus threw a quick score to Duve and the Cents pulled to within two points.

When Northview came back out on the field, middle linebacker Cortez Wright made the play of the game when he picked off a critical pass to tie the score at 14-14. The defenses took over from there and the game ended in a tie.

In the last pool game of a very long day, the Cents took on a deep, strong, Division 1 program in Rancho Cucamonga. QB Eckhaus started for the Centaurs and played the entire game.

Rancho took a quick lead, but two series later Eckhaus hit Tyler Luckett with a TD to tie the score at six.

On the series, Eckhaus threw to Tatum, who made a leaping grab in the end zone to give the Cents their first lead at 12-6.

Rancho quickly moved down the field, but Jamal Glaspie made a great play near the end zone to pick off a pass. making the score 14-6.

The Centaurs then drove down the field and Eckhaus hit Luckett for a touchdown to make the score 20-6.

On Rancho's next possession, lightning struck again. Dominique Tatum made a spectacular interception to make the score 22-6.

With such a big lead, all the Cents needed to do was to sustain long drives to run out the clock. But they couldn't and Rancho answered with two quick touchdowns, narrowing the Centaur lead to 22-18.

The Cents regained their footing, though, and were able to empty the clock to preserve the victory.


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