First published in the Nov. 17 print issue of the Pasadena Outlook.
The Maranatha High School varsity football team’s terrific season continued after edging visiting Jurupa Valley in overtime, 49-47, in a CIF-SS Division XIII quarterfinal game last Friday.
“When we got into overtime we scored and lined up to kick the extra point, but [Jurupa Valley] jumped offsides which moved the ball to the one-and-a-half-yard line. At that point, I decided to go for two,” Maranatha head coach Rand Holdren said. “They got the ball and ran counter to the right three times and scored. They ran counter to the right again [for two] and it was stuffed. I want to say there were probably six guys on that tackle at the end of the game.”
Sophomore Miles O’Malley had a huge offensive night, as he rushed for 87 yards and a pair of touchdowns, added 94 receiving yards and a pair of touchdowns, and returned a kickoff for an 82-yard touchdown.
“He’s special. He gets that ball and we don’t know what’s going to happen; he can score at any time,” Holdren said. “He is a sophomore, so he’s still trying to figure things out. He works a lot on instinct and he’s just tough to stop.”
Senior quarterback Michael Martin passed for 285 yards and four touchdowns and rushed for another 93 yards while converting a crucial two-point attempt. Senior Connor Patterson had four receptions for 124 yards and a touchdown, while senior Samuel Funches added a receiving touchdown. Paul Argueta and Dexter Bryant each registered 10 tackles on defense, while sophomore Owen Meleka went 5-for-6 in PAT attempts.
The Minutemen previously opened the CIF playoffs by dominating visiting Santa Rosa Academy of Menifee, 41-22, in a first-round game. Martin completed 10-of-18 passes for 214 yards and a touchdown while rushing for 49 yards and a touchdown on seven carries. O’Malley rushed for a team-high 197 yards and a pair of touchdowns on 18 carries and added a 31-yard reception. Patterson made six catches for a game-high 149 yards with a pair of touchdowns, while sophomore Owen Meleka went 5-for-5 in PAT attempts and drilled a pair of field goals.
Junior Jahmel Reeves rushed for 15 yards on one carry and registered 11 tackles, Miguel Vazquez had a 25-yard reception, senior Isaac Ton made a 6-yard catch with four tackles and a sack on defense, and Funches had a 3-yard reception.
Jacob Neely amassed a game-high 12 tackles, Bryant finished with 10 tackles and a sack, and Dejohn Jones racked up 10 tackles. Junior Carter Shupper registered eight tackles, freshman Niko Vergara made seven tackles, and senior Karsten Halvorson had three tackles and a pair of sacks. Bradley Loiacono finished with three tackles and a pair of interceptions, AJ Campana had three tackles and an interception, and senior Yanjun “Michael” Li made six pancake blocks. Senior JT Lam had two tackles, Beau Stubbs finished with one tackle and a fumble recovery, and senior Patrick Covert and junior Andrew Massino each had one tackle.
Maranatha (11-0-1 overall) the undefeated Cottonwood League champion, advanced to the semifinals and will visit San Gabriel (9-3 overall) on Friday, Nov. 18, at 7 p.m. If victorious, the Minutemen would advance to the CIF championship game and meet either Bishop Montgomery High of Torrance (9-2-1 overall) or Arrowhead Christian High of Redlands (8-4 overall) the following week.
The Wolves were ousted from the CIF-SS eight-man Division I playoffs after losing at the undefeated California School for the Deaf in Riverside, 58-28, last Friday.
Senior Jack Jones completed eight passes for 108 yards and a pair of touchdowns and rushed for 15 yards on two carries. Junior Noah Willingham rushed for 59 yards and a touchdown on 18 carries while adding five receptions for 58 yards and a touchdown.
Senior Luca Yeghnezar made an 11-yard catch for a touchdown and rushed for 42 yards on six carries. Junior Alex Chorba completed four passes for 60 yards and a touchdown, freshman Owen Willingham had four receptions for 83 yards and a touchdown, and sophomore John Battaglia made a 9-yard catch.
Flintridge Prep previously edged visiting Valley Christian Academy of Santa Maria, 27-25, in the first round of CIF. Yeghnezar rushed for 173 yards and three touchdowns on 30 carries, while Noah Willingham rushed for 59 yards and one touchdown on four carries.
Chorba completed five passes for 24 yards while Jones completed a pair of passes for 14 yards.
The Wolves finished the campaign third in the Prep League standings with a 1-2 record (6-3 overall) and will look to return to the postseason next year.
The Lancers’ season ended after losing their CIF-SS Division X opener to visiting Sunny Hills High on Fullerton, 48-22, on Nov. 4.
Junior quarterback David Mysza completed 21 passes for 279 yards and three touchdowns while rushing for 11 yards on a pair of carries for La Salle. Sophomore Daniel Arroyas Jr. made three receptions for a game-high 104 yards and a touchdown while adding six tackles on defense.
Junior Mauricio Pavon made 10 catches for 62 yards and a touchdown while adding a pair of two-point conversions. Senior Will Clougherty had a pair of receptions for 34 yards and a touchdown, rushed for 35 yards on three carries and had three tackles.
Junior Aidan Leyland had two receptions for 61 yards, senior Anthony Balurdi rushed for 25 yards on eight carries, caught three passes for nine yards and made three tackles, and senior Andrew Boecking made a 10-yard catch and had seven tackles.
Junior Thomas Gomez racked up a game-high 11 tackles, senior Mak Hadziosmanovic registered seven tackles and an interception, and freshmen Christian Alarcon and Drew Ward each made five tackles. Freshman Chris Cardenas finished with four tackles, while seniors Adam Pavon and Ian Truitt each had three tackles. Junior Raymond Marshall, freshman Alex Darlas, Jack Seibert and Kyle Godwin made a pair of tackles, while sophomore Omar Elhawary had one tackle.
La Salle finished third in the Del Rey League standings with a 2-2 record (5-6 overall) and will look to return to the postseason next year.