An enthusiastic crowd estimated at 3,000 fans packed the Malibu High School bleachers and track Friday as the Sharks football team hosted the Eagles from Bakersfield Christian High School for Malibu’s Homecoming game. The Sharks rolled on to their fourth consecutive victory with a convincing 42-13 effort, improving their season record to 4-1. Scouts from Division I college teams were present, as the Malibu football program has gained attention from across the region.
After holding a slim 14-7 lead at halftime, coach Rich Lawson’s potent running attack, led by junior Miles Edman (154 yards, 3 touchdowns), Andrew Heric (140 yards, 3 touchdowns) and Matt Nechak (70 yards), once again appeared to be unstoppable against a tough Eagles defense. For the second consecutive game, however, both Edman and Nechak had long runs called back due to holding calls against Shark linemen.
The Sharks’ defense delivered punishing hits to Bakersfield’s runners with gang tackles by Kieran Doody, Johnny O’Neal, Andrew “the Animal” Heric and Brandon Sindell. Garrett Brizendine intercepted a second half pass to help keep the Sharks on track. This is the fourth consecutive week that Malibu’s defense has virtually shut down their opponents. Two of those games were shutouts.
The only weak spot for the Sharks has been on kickoff coverage, where opposing teams have managed to acquire great field position on kick returns. In Friday’s contest, the Eagles were able to score a touchdown early in the second half by returning a Malibu onside kick as the Sharks players seemed confused and failed to down the football.
In the afternoon contest, the junior varsity Sharks suffered their first defeat of the season, losing to Golden Valley by a score of 33-6, despite a 6-6 halftime score. This ended their six game winning streak that stretched back to last season and moving their record to 3-1.
The Malibu football squads face tough tests this week as they travel to Campbell Hall for Friday contests. The Sharks return home on Oct. 21 for a 3 p.m. junior varsity matchup versus Chadwick, followed by an Oct. 22 varsity game at 2:30 p.m., also against Chadwick.