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Palomar College
1140 W. Mission Rd.

San Marcos, CA 92069
(760) 744-1150 Ext. 2460
FAX (760) 761-3588
Athletic Director:
John Woods

FOOTBALL

Schedule | 2001 | 2002 | 2002 Stats | 2003 Stats | Roster | Coaching Staff | Team History

USA No. 4 Canyons ousts Comets

College of the Canyons, ranked No. 4 in the Nation by the J.C. Grid-Wire, beat Palomar for the second time this season Saturday night, winning 24-14 at Valencia, Calif., to end the Comets' football season.

The Western State Bowl victory, which doubled as a first-round Southern California Community College playoff game, enabled the defending Southern California Champions to advance to 11-0, while the Comets finished 8-3. Palomar entered the game ranked No. 15 in the Nation.

Canyons put Palomar in a 14-0 hole early after a pair of strange plays. COC quarterback Jason Beck caught a touchdown pass, followed by another TD on a short run after a disputed call when it was ruled Ryan Hotchkiss' knee had touched the ground following a bad snap. Hotchkiss boomed an apparent long punt from deep in Palomar territory on the play, but instead of having the ball on its own side of the 50, Canyons instead had a first-and-goal at the Palomar 10. The Cougars scored two plays later.

The Comets outscored the Cougars the rest of the game 14-10, but the damage had been done.

Canyons had to overcome a huge game from Palomar freshman receiver Caleb Spencer, who caught eight passes from freshman quarterback Tony Paoli for 179 yards and touchdowns of 43 and 28 yards. Paolli finished 15-for-36 passing for 273 yards and added 40 net yards rushing on 14 carries. Paoli actually rushed for 68 yards, but his net total resulted from being sacked four times for minus-28 yards.

Freshman safety Josh Gomez had an intercption for the Comets, and freshman returner Speedy Anthony returned two kickoffs for 66 yards and two punts for an additional 15 yards. Freshman defensive lineman Andy Huang recorded 1 1/2 sacks.

The 10-point defeat was Palomar's worst loss in its last 22 games and its second most one-sided loss in its last 39 games.

J.C. GRID-WIRE NATIONAL TOP 25 — 1. Butler County (Kansas), 11-0; 2. City College of San Francisco, 10-0; 3. Grossmont, 10-0; 4. College of the Canyons, 10-0; 5. Santa Rosa, 10-0; 6. Mt. SAC, 9-1; 7. Dixie State (Utah), 10-1; 8. Pearl River (Mississippi), 10-1; 9. Sierra, 10-0; 10. Reedley, 9-1; 11. Snow (Utah), 8-1; 12. San Joaquin Delta, 9-1; 13. College of San Mateo, 9-1; 14. Coffeyville (Kansas) 9-2; 15. PALOMAR (8-2); 16. Northeastern Oklahoma, 9-2; 17. Fresno City College, 8-2; 18. Butte, 8-2; 19. Fullerton, 8-2; 20. Tyler (Texas), 9-2; 21. Saddleback, 8-2; 22.William Rainey Harper (Illinois) 10-1); 23. Glendale (Arizona) 8-2; 24. Citrus, 9-1; 25. Tie between Hinds (Mississippi), 9-2; Georgia Military, 8-2; and Allan Hancock, 8-2.

CLICK HERE to view the VistaPress.net report on the game

CLICK HERE to view a North County Times feature on Palomar quarterback Tony Paoli entering the game

Hargis, Early get top awards

Palomar cornerback Josh Hargis, who leads the Nation with 11 interceptions in 10 games, was selected as Mission Conference American Division Defensive Player of the Year and the Comets' Joe Early was named conference Co-Coach of the Year in voting by confernece coaches. Early shared the coaching honor with Mt. SAC's Bill Fisk.

Joining Hargis on the All-American Division first team: Receiver Adam Burke and tackle Chris Pino on offense; Safety Ron Rockett, linebacker Jeff Norton, end Nick Badin and tackle Andy Huang on defense; and kicker Ryan Lux and punter Ryan Hotchkiss on special teams.

Named to the second team: Tackle Taylor Schmidt, running back Lawrence Letuli, receiver Travis Plash, quarterback Tony Paoli and receiver Caleb Spencer on offense; corner Brandon Bell, safety Josh Gomez, linebacker Craig Keenan, end Soli Lefiti and tackle Andrew Tauanu'u on defense; and kick and punt returner Brandon Anthony on special teams.

Norton, Pino, Hargis, Lux and Hotchkiss were recommended as All-State candidates.

Comets win title; Canyons rematch next

Thanks among other things to Josh Gomez' two interceptions and fumble return for a 55-yard touchdown, Palomar College downed host Cerritos 27-17 in the teams' regular-season finale Saturday.

The victory gives the Comets (8-2 and losers only to two National Top Ten teams, both in overtime) a share of the Mission Conference American Division championship with Mt. SAC, the No. 1 seed in the Southern California playoffs, both with 4-1 division records..

First up for the Comets in the playoffs: a Saturday, Nov. 22 rematch with 10-0 College of the Canyons, the defending Southern California champion which beat Palomar in overtime back on Sept. 13.

The Comets will return to the scene of the crime for that one — Cougar Stadium on the Canyons campus. Kickoff will be at 7 p.m.

Gomez' fumble return gave Palomar an early lead against Cerritos, and the Comets made it 14-0 later in the first quarter on a 10-yard touchdown pass from Tony Paoli to Travis Plash.

The Falcons (6-4, 3-2) dominated the second and third quarters to take a 17-14 lead, but the Comets battled back to score twice in the fourth quarter on a 3-yard pass from Paoli to Caleb Spencer and a 12-yard run by Lawrence Letuli.

Spencer had four catches for 105 yards on the evening, and also lined up at quarterback to gain 5 yards on a run.

Along with his two picks and TD fumble return, Gomez recorded 10 tackles (eight solo). Linebacker Jeff Norton led the Comets with 17 tackles (nine solo) and a caused fumble. Defensive end Nick Badin contributed eight tackles (six solo), two sacks, a tackle for a loss and a pass deflection.

CLICK HERE to view the game story from the VistaPress.net web site

CLICK HERE to view final Palomar regular-season stats

CLICK HERE to view complete playoff information

Redskins re-sign ex-Comet Elisara

The Washington Redskins re-signed former Palomar College offensive tackle Pita Elisara on Friday, Nov. 7.

Elisara played in four preseason games with the Redskins, was released before the regular season but now returns to the team. The 6-foot-4, 305-pound Elisara played on the four-year college level in the Big Ten for the University of Indiana.

Among other ex-Comets, Kevin Swayne is in his third season as a wide receiver for the New York Jets. Swayne, who played on the four-year college level at Wayne State (Neb.), is listed as second on the depth chart at one of the receiver spots.

Chris Cash (Palomar / USC) is still on injured reserve for the Detroit Lions. Cash led all NFL cornerbacks in tackles last season as a rookie but sustained a serious knee injury early this season.

Offensive tackle Mitch White (Palomar / Oregon State), center Matt O'Neal (Palomar / Oklahoma), running back Joe Hall (Palomar / Kansas State) and safety Robbie Robinson (Palomar / Colorado) also were on NFL preseason rosters this season. White and O'Neal have been on and off various teams' practice rosters during the regular season.

2003 Schedule, Results

DAY

DATE

OPPONENT

LOCATION

TIME

W/L

SCORE

Sat

Sept 6

Mt. San Jacinto

Home

1:00

  W

34-10

Sat

Sept 13

College of the Canyons

Away

7:00

L

15-21 (OT)

Sat

Sept 20

*Fullerton

C.S. Fullerton

1:00

W

30-26

Sat

Sept 27

*Saddleback

Home

1:00

W

16-13

Sat

Oct 4

*Pasadena City College

Away

7:00

W

44-20

Sat

Oct 18

**Mt. SAC

Home

1:00

L

23-26 (OT)

Sat

Oct 25

**Golden West

Home

1:00

W

26-9

Sat

Nov 1

**Orange Coast

Away

6:00

W

21-3

Sat

Nov 8

**Long Beach City College

Home

1:00

W

44-24

Sat

Nov 15

**Cerritos

Away

7:00

W

27-17

West State Bowl (Southern California Playoffs, First Round)

Sat

Nov. 22

College of the Canyons

Away

7:00

L

14-24

* — Mission Conference cross-over games

** — Mission Conference American Division games

2002 Schedule, Results

DAY

DATE

OPPONENT

LOCATION

TIME

W/L

SCORE

Sat

Sept 14

Moorpark

Away

7:00

W

22-17

Sat

Sept. 21

Southwestern

Home

1:00

W

30-16

Sat

Sept. 28

Long Beach City College

Home

1:00

W

37-17

Sat

Oct. 5

El Camino

Away

6:00

W

33-27

Sat

Oct. 12

Mt. San Antonio

Home

1:00

L

23-31

Sat

Oct. 26

*Fullerton

Home

1:00

W

27-7

Sat

Nov. 2

*Orange Coast

Away

1:00

  W

43-6

Sat

Nov. 9

*Saddleback

Away

5:00

W

19-16

Sat

Nov. 16

*Santa Ana

Home

1:00

W

47-21

Sat

Nov. 23

*Golden West

Home

1:00

W

24-10

South County Bowl at DeVore Stadium, Southwestern College

Sat

Dec. 7

Grossmont

S'western

1:00

W

20-19

* indicates Mission Conference Central Division game

Home Games at Wilson Stadium, Escondido High School

All Games Broadcast Live on KKSM-AM 1320 Radio

CLICK HERE FOR 2002 SEASON

CLICK HERE FOR 2001 SEASON

CLICK HERE FOR 1999 AND 2000 SEASONS

CLICK HERE FOR 1998 SEASON

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