A chance to extend an unbeaten run and an opportunity to make history were both on the line as the Glendale High School varsity football team faced a first-half deficit against Beverly Hills in a nonleague game on Sept. 8.
But in the second half, the Nitros offense exploded.
Behind a strong running game, Glendale went on to secure a come-from-behind victory against Beverly Hills with a 22-6 win at Moyse Field.
The win continues the Nitros’ unbeaten start to the season with a 4-0 record, the first time the team has achieved such an accomplishment since MaxPreps started keeping an online record of team information and statistics in 2004.
The Nitros faced a 6-0 deficit to start the contest.
“I think it was a reminder that all the conditioning and lifting we do throughout the week that this is where it pays back to stay in shape,” first-year head coach Manuel Lemus said about his halftime locker room message. “The most important message I had for them at the end — after kind of getting on them — was that we have to have fun. I think we were playing too tight and I reminded them that this sport is all about having fun while competing.”
The current four-game winning streak stands as the longest string of victories within a season since 2004. Additionally, the four wins equal Glendale’s cumulative win total since 2019 (excluding the 2020 season affected by the COVID-19 pandemic).
“[The players] know; I reminded them yesterday that this hasn’t been done in a long time,” Lemus said about the mindset of his undefeated team. “One of the first goals we talked about when I got here … was to get some notoriety for winning, not for losing.”
Senior Alex Idolor led the charge with 114 rushing yards and a touchdown on 16 carries. Senior Jonathan Wells completed eight passes for 92 yards and a touchdown. He also contributed 9 yards rushing and one touchdown on four carries. Meanwhile, senior Sergio Avalos made a crucial 41-yard touchdown catch.
Senior Austin Aldrete made an impact both side of the field. On offense, Aldrete caught three passes for 31 yards, and recorded six tackles and 0.5 sacks on defense. Senior Jason Martinez added a 31-yard reception, while sophomore Gevork Papazyan contributed seven carries for 18 yards. Sophomore Brady Aldrete went 2-for-3 in PAT attempts while making two tackles and 0.5 sacks on defense.
On the defensive front, sophomore Alexander Shirvanian registered six tackles, senior Alejandro Maravilla finished with five tackles and 1.5 sacks, and senior Moises Zermeno tallied four tackles and 0.5 sacks. Sophomore Jonathan Valenzuala recorded three tackles, senior Freddie Rios Barrientos produced two tackles and 0.5 sacks, and senior Greg Terzian contributed two tackles. Seniors Damien Gurka and Luis Rodriguez each had one tackle, while senior Brandan Guzman recovered a fumble.
Glendale (4-0 overall) hosted Verbum Dei Jesuit High of Los Angeles on Sept. 14; the nonleague game ended after the Glendale News-Press’ deadline and will be included in next week’s issue. The Nitros will host Glenn High of Norwalk on Sept. 21 at 7 p.m. before visiting Bassett High in La Puente on Sept. 29.
First published in the September 16 print issue of the Glendale News-Press.