REDWOOD CITY. The language evolves with each technology, and the youngsters who made the brief bus experience right here Friday evening from Santa Teresa Excessive College are not any exception. For them alone, the possibility to place their stamp on any title efficiency is greater than a once-in-a-generation alternative.
Phrase of the night from senior quarterback Jayden Arevalo: “Belts.”
What higher method to describe a Saints protection that was caught on the objective line lower than 2 minutes earlier than the sport and made it tough for the Sequoia seeded dwelling crew all evening to energy the fourth seeded underdog crew into their first CCS championship recreation since 1987 of the 12 months.
Regardless of a slipshod punt return and blocked shot that resulted in turnovers, and a late subject objective batted by an opponent, the Saints’ protection didn’t budge. They stored the lead that Arévalo confirmed with their massive video games, and slightly later they have been capable of additional broaden their mom tongue.
“We’ll the chip! We’ll the “chip!” Arevalo jumped and chanted together with his teammates after their 31-18 semi-final victory over Sequoia. The elders of this crew, Arevalo and his comrades of age, have been practically 20 years away from being born when the Santa Teresa footballers final uttered these phrases.
“It is so vital to me and particularly to this crew,” the quarterback mentioned of the stakes after he scored 169 yards earlier than kickoff, together with a 56-yard landing that gave them a two-point lead at halftime. “It means every thing to everybody.”
Coach Steve Papin thought of it a hump, each personally and collectively. Papen, in his second season at Santa Teresa, was one win behind his earlier three stops. In final 12 months’s semi-finals, the Saints misplaced arduous.
This 12 months they went 2-3 in league play and completed fourth of their division. Getting into the postseason, they’ve misplaced three of their final 4 video games, albeit two in time beyond regulation and all by one level. They may play No. 3 seeded Branham subsequent weekend within the CCS Division IV Championship.
“We by no means mentioned we needed to win the league championship,” Papin mentioned. “We wish to get to the CCS championship and we’re right here.”
Papin was completely satisfied to fish out vacation ice cubes from his sweatshirt regardless of the busy climate situations.
“It is price it,” he mentioned. “I’ll take it.”
Regardless of opening a 31–12 lead within the first recreation of the fourth quarter, the Saints could not rejoice till Arevalo acquired down on his final knee. Sequoia instantly returned with a 75-yard landing—senior quarterback John Larios to senior broad receiver Jack Elgaen, who dropped one deal with, then one other and went racing—and recovered the following kick with over 10 minutes to go. play.
However as Sequoia edged again into the pink, threatening to chop a holding deficit, Larios got here below strain. He tried to improvise, however senior linebacker Jeffrey Kerr knocked the ball out of his arms and senior defenseman Ian Quintero returned it to Santa Teresa.
Rating 31-18, 7 minutes to play and possession?
Forgive the guests for any untimely flattery.
It took one final defensive stance to safe victory after the second particular groups catastrophe struck.
After operating a number of minutes on the clock however caught in midfield, Sequoyah Jr. Luke Holmes broke by the road of scrimmage and blocked Santa Teresa’s punt; for 2 video games, the Ravens have been inside 3 yards of the top zone. Earlier confusion with the return of the punt allowed Sequoia to make the primary scoring shot.
However 4 gamers later, the Saints have been capable of breathe once more when Sequoias operating again junior Luke Ulrich lay on the garden together with his head in his arms. He did not transfer from the place he was tackled, inches from the pylon, on a failed fourth down try.
Ulrich ran for 81 yards and scored two touchdowns in 20 makes an attempt; Larios competed for 57 extra on the bottom. However once they wanted three yards to remain within the recreation, the Santa Teresa protection gained.
“Oh my god,” Arevalo mentioned. “With out protection, we’d not have gained half the video games. … Quarantine. Do not quit something. These are belts.
Santa Teresa senior Joshua Reyes led all rushers with 96 yards on 19 carries and scored two touchdowns.
His first document capped an 11-game response to Sequoia’s first scoring drive — after Santa Teresa missed a punt return and put Sequoia on his facet 50 — and gave the Ravens a 10-6 lead that they did not needed to refuse. .
Senior Evan Smith additionally contributed 60 yards on 10 makes an attempt, together with a 29-yard landing that made him 24-12 halfway by the third quarter.
Reyes scored the Saints’ final factors after being blasted to loss of life by officers in what may have been one other Arévalo landing.
QB would have had a straightforward six on the non-obligatory 7-yard goaltender, however officers ruined the sport when the pretend ball service was caught. Regardless of protests from the Santa Teresa touchline, the trustworthy mistake proved pointless as Reyes scored simply as simply on the subsequent play.
In accordance with Papin, each the landing and Arevalo’s 56-yard throw have been referred to as by the quarterback. The coach famous that he referred to his senior quarterback as “Aaron Rodgers” all week.
“Initially it was a passing recreation,” Arevalo mentioned of his TD earlier than the break. “There was nobody, so I made a decision that I’d play for my crew. I made a few strikes and went to the sideline. Quantity 5 (Noah Gardere) made a block that took me to the top zone. I used to be simply attempting to not fall. I used to be tripping so I simply dived into the top zone.”
A win could be nearly as vital for Sequoia, which has been looking for its first championship since 2010. As an alternative, the Ravens will discover solace in a 10-win season, one in need of the varsity document.
Many gamers held again tears as the group broke off as a result of an prolonged post-match handle by coach Rob Poulos. It was solely the varsity’s fourth look within the part playoffs. To succeed in the semi-finals, they gained a double time beyond regulation thriller within the first spherical.
“As a lot as we needed this recreation to go fallacious,” he mentioned, “it was our first blocked shot of the season. It was our first rebound hit in a recreation this season. We simply stored giving ourselves possibilities, stored taking part in and stored combating. I adore it.
“We didn’t get the specified consequence, however, my God, the youngsters simply shoot, play and stay on the sting…”
The coach was interrupted by one in all his gamers with tears in his eyes and hugged him.
“Come right here, come right here,” he mentioned, wrapping his arms round him and urgent his mouth to his ear. “You placed on performs. You are exhausted. The method is extra vital than the outcomes.”
He despatched the boy away and turned his consideration again to the interview.
“I do not consider in constructing blocks,” Poulos mentioned. “It has been a profitable season. Subsequent 12 months your personal animal.