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Football: Garfield wins East L.A. Classic, 7-0

October 26, 2012 | 10:46 pm

_A261190Juan Carlos Munoz intercepted a pass in the end zone and returned it 40 yards with 31 seconds left and Garfield held on to defeat Roosevelt 7-0 in the 78th East L.A. Classic at East Los Angeles College.

If Garfield can beat Huntington Park in its regular season finale next week it will gain a share of the Eastern League title.

Fittingly, it was Bulldogs senior running back Lance Fernandez who scored the game's only touchdown on a nine-yard run in the second quarter. He has had three huge games against his neighborhood rivals--all ending in Garfield victories. Garfield has won six of the last eight East L.A. Classic games.  

"The crowd, all the attention leading up to it... something about this game brings out the best in me," said Fernandez, who gained 50 yards in 16 carries. "Coming out of the tunnel gets me so pumped up. My O-line did a great job--all credit to them." 

Fullback Larry Ravelo, who has had six family members play in the rivalry, had 63 yards in 15 carries and quarterback Joshua Mendoza threw for 107 yards.  

Homecoming king Gilbert Herrera was limited to 62 yards in 13 carries for the Rough Riders, who still lead 40-32-6 in a series that began in 1925. The last shutout was in 2003 when Roosevelt won 33-0.  

-- Steve Galluzzo  

Photo: Juan Mendoza (left) and Lance Fernandez had reason to smile after Garfield defeated rival Roosevelt for the third straight season. Credit: Steve Galluzzo / For The Times