New QB Flores shines in Miller blowout

FONTANA - A.J. Springer isn't here anymore, but Juan Flores looked like he might prove to be a capable replacement.

Flores passed for 92 yards and rushed for 65 more as Miller routed Palm Springs 21-3 on Friday night in a nonleague season opener at Miller High School.

"There were some visions of A.J. there," Miller coach Jeff Steinberg said. "But he's going to be his own player."

The game also featured the debut of controversial transfer running back David Dash. Dash, who was originally declared ineligible after his transfer from Fontana then had it overturned on appeal, rushed for 46 yards on 10 carries and scored a touchdown. He also returned the second-half kickoff 64 yards to set up a touchdown.

"It felt so good to play in this game, it's indescribable," Dash said. "It feels so good after everything that happened."

Miller's offense looked a little sluggish at times, but its defense was solid from the start.

"I had no worries when our defense was out there," Steinberg said. "But our defense was on the field a little too much in the first half."

Miller led just 7-3 at halftime.

"We felt like we should've had about 30 points," Steinberg said.

Miller went up by two scores on the opening drive of the third quarter when Dash's 64-yard kickoff return set up Dash's four-yard touchdown run and a 14-3 lead.

"We were trying to work in a bunch of guys," Steinberg said of the fact Dash had only 10 carries. "He knows he'll get his carries by the end of the year."

Palm Springs could not sustain drives and never got any farther than midfield in the second half. Palm Springs' lone points came after recovering a Miller fumble at the Rebel 44, eventually resulting in a Nephi Garcia 31-yard field goal.

Outside of that field goal drove, Palm Springs' deepest penetration into Rebel territory was the 42. In the second half, Palm Springs never got past midfield.

The Indians alternated quarterbacks on each series, but neither Steven Saunders (5-of-10, 40 yards) nor Michael Karls (4-of-10, 50 yards) could keep the offense moving. Miller outgained Palm Springs 242-148 in yards of total offense.

Flores, meanwhile, looked capable of filling the vacancy left by the graduation of the multi-talented Springer. He completed only five of 14 passes, but was victimized by several drops, including two sure touchdowns.

"He had two drops on touchdowns and another pass bobbled. He really only made one mistake, and that was the interception," Steinberg said. "I thought he had a very good game."

Flores didn't have a carry until the second half, when he carried six times for the team-leading 65 yards.

Flores' first touchdown pass was 35 yards to Jonathon Gayles on the first drive of the first quarter. The last one, a 30-yarder to Trayvon Ralph with 4:10 to play in the game, sealed the victory.