This time, it wasn't a desperation pass, but an accurate kick that decided the outcome of a showdown between two of the top teams in California and in the nation.
Brooks Rossman, who just transferred to Los Alamitos from Torrey Pines of San Diego, hit a 25-yard field goal with 44 seconds left, leading the FAB 50 No. 5 Griffins to a 20-17 victory over No. 17 Hart on Friday night at College of the Canyons. The teams also were No. 2 and No. 4 in the CalHiSports.com state rankings.
Kevin Ciccone, known more being a top-notch receiver, hit a 25-yard field goal for Hart in the fourth quarter to even the game at 17.
Hart trailed 17-14 at halftime when it had to scrap its offense as All-State quarterback Sean Norton left the game after the second quarter as a result of a rib injury. Robby Moore, brother of UCLA quarterback Matt Moore, entered the game for Hart, which then went from a wide-open attack to a wing-T formation.
On the first play from scrimmage, Los Alamitos' Sean Clark hit Norton, who fumbled and Randy Estes returned it 20 yards for a touchdown and a 7-0 lead.
Dan Howell, the star of the game, staked Hart to a 14-7 lead, scoring on runs of 58 and 1 yards. Howell finished with 180 yards, handled the punting duties and had an interception on defense.
Los Al evened the score at 14 when quarterback Jimmy Barnes scored on a 20-yard run. Rossman gave Los Al a 17-14 lead with a 38-yard field goal with 21 seconds left in the half.
In last year's game, Hart scored a touchdown on the last play of the game to pull within one at 21-20 and then had to go for a tie on a 35-yard PAT due to a penalty after the touchdown. It was good, so the final was 21-21. That score then became more and more significant as the season unfolded. Los Al didn't lose at all and wound up as the CIF Southern Section Division I champion. Hart lost by 10-6 in the CIFSS Division II final to Mission Viejo.
Note: This writeup was taken from watching the game on Fox Sports Net. No one from Student Sports Inc. was able to attend in person.