The game was a rout, but the interception it produced was legendary.
In the midst of a 46-0 rout of Santa Fe (Calif.) High, Temecula (Calif.) Chaparral High was witness to one of the most acrobatic interceptions of the season, if not the decade. Senior defensive back Chris Stratton tracked a deep Santa Fe pass back toward the end zone. Then, just as he was running out of room, he elevated, pulled down a one-handed pick in the palm of his hand and landed with cat-like reflexes appropriate for a star of a team called the Pumas, tapping his heels in bounds before falling backward out of the side of the end zone.
Calvin Johnson, eat your heart out.
As it turns out, the interception was the safety's online highlight in the non-district whitewash. Stratton also returned a punt for a touchdown early in the third quarter. And he and his teammates combined to limit Santa Fe to just 61 yards of total offense in the entire game.
All of those achievements are nice, but none will be remembered like Stratton's pick, which was absolutely otherworldly. All of those accolades earned by the team's defense and Stratton's individual performance still couldn't help the team avoid some minor criticism from Chaparral coach Ryan Tukua.
"We are going to have to play better than we did tonight," Tukua told the North County Times. "Hopefully, we got some of the kinks out and we will be more focused next week."
A better interception than the one Stratton turned in on Friday? Now that is worth tuning in for.