SI Football: Start of the Season Blues?
Christiaan Parnell '14
With back-to-back CCS titles, the expectations of the SI football program are higher than ever. Expecting to carry the momentum into this season, SI suffered two preseason losses to senior heavy, reigning NCS champions Marin Catholic and the reigning PAL champions Terra Nova, respectively.
At the home opener on JB Murphy Field, SI took a commanding 10-0 lead in the first quarter led by a leaping catch in the back of the end zone by Senior wide receiver Joe Lang.
MC converted two fourth downs on the next possession to score a touchdown. On the following MC offensive possessions, University of Nevada- Reno bound wide receiver Andrew Celis converted an option pass for a touchdown, a field goal, and caught a touchdown pass, ending the half with a 24-10 MC lead.
SI scored a safety to begin the second half. This defensive score was not enough, for MC took control of the game with a rushing touchdown with 6:57 in the fourth quarter. Standout Senior running back Elijah Dale (28 rushes for 106 yards) scored the final touchdown with 3:44 to go in the game. With a 31-20 MC win, they tied the all time SI-MC football series at 9-9-1.
The next week, SI took on the high- powered spread offense of Terra Nova led by Junior quarterback Anthony Gordon. While SI hoped to mimic the results of last year’s 46-26 victory, Terra Nova had different plans in mind. Unexpectedly, special teams characterized the first half. On the opening kickoff, Terra Nova’s Jaylend Jones scored a 95-yard kickoff return. On their next offensive possession, Senior linebacker Scott Serrato blocked and recovered a failed field goal attempt. Terra Nova then forced SI to punt, blocked it, and took over on SI’s 20.
With 9:27 to go in the second quarter, senior wide out Ikaika Hall caught a tipped pass in the end zone, evening the game 7-7. This was as close as the game would get.
As the game progressed, the evident Gordon to Jones chemistry was too much for the Sunset Swarm. With a resounding 88 total points, SI fell to Terra Nova 50-33.
In last year’s game, Elijah Dale ran for a game- high 225 yards on 28 carries and totaled 5 touchdowns. After spending this past summer working on his speed, strength, and routes, Dale still is not producing the numbers he was last season. “I’m hungry and want to get better”, he said. “We all do.”
One might ask what’s the deal with SI football? Rumors of how SI is Terra Nova’s first win against a WCAL opponent in 12 years and the third time that a team has scored 50 points on SI are spreading. The SI community has been left to wonder whether the football program will have as much success as in the past years.
Senior offensive linemen Liam Mihelich believes, “We are a great team that is having the start of the season blues.”
In my opinion, the true question that must be asked is what is the identity of this team? From watching each game, it is clear that the roles of the players are not defined.
According to Coach John Regalia, “Our team’s identity is unclear”, which worries the supporters of the football program. However, each week is a new test in uncovering the team’s character. “We might not know the team’s identity until the end of the season”, Coach Regalia said, “that’s why I love high school football, there’s a new, unique team each year.”
When asked about his thoughts on this season, Coach Regalia responded, “The expectation for every year is to win a league title.”
09/07 vs Marin Catholic 20-31
Rushing: Elijah Dale, 31 carries, 106 yards, 1 TD
Passing: Ryan Hagfeldt, Attempted/Completed 156 passing yards, 1 TD
09/14 vs Terra Nova
Passing: Ryan Hagfeldt, 27 of 43, 300 yards, 3 TD, 2 Interceptions
09/20 vs Menlo Atherton
Rushing: Elijah Dale, 9 carries, 32 yards
Passing: Ryan Hagfeldt, 24 of 36, 224 yards, 2 Interceptions
Receiving: Luke Lotti, 4 catches, 63 yards
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