After winning the program’s first CIF championship since 1978, the Culver City Football team entered the 2019 season with even more to prove. The Centaurs graduated several key contributors from last year’s team and had a revamped lineup heading into the season. The expectations were high, but Culver’s 5-0 start has shown that they’re more than capable of living up to the precedent set by last year’s team.
The Centaurs began their season with wins over West Torrance and Peninsula before facing their first real challenge against Warren High School, a team that last year Culver barely beat with a last second TD. After a rather slow start, the Centaur offense proved too much for Warren to handle, and Culver won 56-28, improving to 3-0.
In Week 4, Culver faced a Palos Verdes team that handed them their first loss of the 2018 season. With said defeat still fresh in their minds, many of the Centaurs saw this as a revenge game, and used it as further motivation. After falling behind 28-7, however, the Centaurs looked outmatched by the Sea Kings, and seemed to have no answers on either side of the ball. But against all odds, Culver marched back and won in a 55-52 overtime thriller.
Junior quarterback Zevi Eckhaus threw for a whopping 523 yards and 7 TD’s, while scoring the game-winning rushing TD in OT. 6 of those scoring plays went to Senior WR Chris Miller, who constantly stepped up when Culver needed a big play. This victory over Palos Verdes meant more than the typical win, as it displayed Culver’s incredible resilience in a game that looked all but lost.
The Centaurs carried their momentum into Week 5, cruising to a 60-14 win over Dorsey High School. This win marked the 5th straight game where Culver’s electrifying offense topped the 55 point mark.
Culver will enter Ocean League play this week, and the stakes will greatly increase. Although all league games are certainly important, one opponent stands out above the rest: Lawndale. The Centaurs have finished 2nd to the Lawndale Cardinals in back-to-back years, but are looking to change that in 2019.
When asked about the team’s season goals, Senior WR Tanner Duve said, “Our first goal is to win the Ocean League, which is something we haven’t done in 3 years.” That Ocean League title will depend on whether Culver can beat the formidable Cardinals.
Duve also added, “Our biggest goal is to win a state championship, which is definitely something we have a shot at, as long as everyone is all in and we keep playing great football.” A state title is something Culver has yet to win, and it won’t be an easy task by any means. However, if this season has taught us anything, it’s that no obstacle is too great of a challenge for this Culver City Football team.