“Right now, I don’t know what I have. They worked hard, but in a physical challenge [from Villanova Prep], they just seemed to wilt.”
The Rebels, who qualified for the CIF Southern Section Northeast Division playoffs last season, got their only score when junior linebacker Eric Kazangian scored on a 39-yard interception return to make it 6-3 with 8:15 left in the second quarter. Kazangian, who earned All-Area honors after helping the school’s tennis team win its first Prep League championship since 1939, picked off a pass by reserve quarterback Jon Woodcock and returned it virtually untouched to give the Rebels some hope.
Unfortunately for the Rebels, Kazangian’s effort didn’t arouse Flintridge Prep’s offensive unit. Junior quarterback Kyle McDonald failed to complete any of his eight passes. Eight Flintridge Prep running backs combined for 71 yards with juniors Jacob Steenwyk and Jordan Whaley rushing for 25 yards apiece.
The Rebels lost Whaley to an apparent right-knee or hip injury with 42.3 seconds left in the third quarter. Whaley, who finished with seven rushes, leaped in the air to try to catch a pass from McDonald, but Whaley landed awkwardly on his right side. He was on the ground for 15 minutes and paramedics arrived before taking him to a local hospital for treatment.
“I think it’s something in his hip,” said Skaggs, whose team opened its season with a lopsided 46-13 nonleague home loss to St. Genevieve on Sept. 12. “It might be a pulled or torn hamstring, but I’ve got a feeling it’s the hip.
“That would be horrible if we lost him for the season. He’s a tremendous player. If we lose him, I don’t know what I’m going to do.”
With Whaley possibly out for an extended period of time, Skaggs will look to regroup the Rebels.
“We had no receiving yards, but we had guys who were wide open,” Skaggs said. “We got nothing.”