WHITTIER – Marina running back Blaine Riederich scored a career-high five touchdowns to lead the Vikings to a 54-21 victory over Whittier Christian in a nonleague game Friday evening at Whittier College.
Riederich exploded for three TDs in the opening quarter and added two more in the second half.
“We practiced like crazy and came out with intensity and we were hyped to win,” said Riederich, who rushed for 158 yards and three TDs and also caught two TD passes.
Brandon Savea also had a huge game for Marina as he rushed for 182 yards on six carries.
The Heralds capitalized on a Vikings turnover in the opening moments and marched 80 yards in five plays. Quarterback Quinn Commans completed a 21-yard TD pass to Ryan Romero to give Whittier Christian a 7-0 lead.
The Vikings offense took over from that point and scored on their next three possessions.
Riederich capped a short drive with a 4-yard touchdown run to cut the lead to 7-6.
On Marina’s next possession Riederich caught a 41-yard TD pass from quarterback Ian Green, as the Vikings needed just three plays to take a 14-7 lead.
Following a Heralds three-and-out, Riederich culminated a two-play series with a 17-yard TD run to propel the Vikings to a 21-7 lead.
Green added a short TD run in the second quarter as Marina built a 28-7 halftime lead.
The two teams combined for 546 yards of offense in the opening half. Commans completed 26 of 47 passes for 367 yards and three touchdowns in the game but the Heralds couldn’t draw any closer than two touchdowns.
Whittier Christian had their three game winning streak snapped. Friday’s contest was the first game between the two teams.
Vikings kicker Shelby Stitt, one of two female kickers in Orange County this season, converted 4 of 7 PATs in the game.
“We knew they were a big challenge for us and we just didn’t do a good job stopping them,” said Whittier Christian coach Sergio Gradilla. “I’m still proud of the way they kept battling.”