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SMALL SCHOOLS NOTEBOOK: TURNOVERS HELP GIVE DESERT SOME ROOM.

Byline: Richard Perkins Staff Writer

Desert High's football team (7-0, 2-0) put a little distance between itself and Mojave (5-1, 1-1) in the race for the High Desert League title last Friday with a 14-3 victory.

Despite the fact Mojave put up larger numbers in almost every category, including rushing, passing and first downs, it was turnovers - six of them - that did Mojave in.

``We've made mistakes this year,'' Mojave coach Larry Satterfield said, ``only not so many and we've been able to overcome them.''

On the game's initial drive, Mojave drove the ball 80 yards, eating up eight minutes of the first quarter only to fumble the ball away.

``They are a ball-control team, and they most certainly accomplished that,'' Desert coach Joel Sweitzer said.

Desert next faces Kern Valley on the road today. Mojave travels to Bishop.

--Win-win situation: Desert might have done more than just taken a lead in the league standings; it might already have won the league title.

The Scorpions are the only undefeated team left in league. Since the High Desert League was formed in 1992, no team with a loss has won the title.

--New league to roost: The Paraclete football team (5-2) opens its first season of Olympic League play this week against Montclair Prep of Van Nuys (5-1) at Antelope Valley College. The Spirits spent the last several years ruling the Alpha League.

The four-team Olympic also includes Kilpatrick of Malibu and Valley Christian of Cerritos and should make for some good football.

``This is game one of our short league schedule, so this game is extremely important,'' Paraclete coach Jeff Cortez said. ``This is really our second season, and the games should be intense and playoff caliber.''

--Not by the numbers: The Spirits, ranked fourth in the Southern Section Division XI poll, should have it tough against fifth-ranked Montclair Prep, which also happens to have the second-best defense among area small schools, allowing 206.7 yards per game.

Still, Cortez said it's not the numbers he's concerned with.

``I don't really look at numbers,'' he said. ``I prepare by looking at game films and then trying to exploit what the defense gives us.''

Montclair Prep does not give much. It has allowed only an average of 93.4 yards a game on the ground and 107.8 through the air.

CAPTION(S):

photo

Photo:

Desert football player Rudy Burgess helped the Scorpions beat Mojave 14-3 last Friday, a victory that put Desert in the driver's seat in the High Desert League.

Tom Mendoza/Staff Photographer
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Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Nov 1, 2002
Words:425
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