East County Sports

Late-night thrills in opening round




EastCountySports.com staff report


LAKESIDE – What a night in the opening round of the playoffs, not only in the East County, but county-wide.

Grossmont stunned Steele Cayon in an All-East County matchup and six others advanced to the quarterfinals, including road teams Granite Hills, Christian, and El Cajon Valley.

Meanwhile, El Capitan and Santana won in overtime to advance, while West Hills improved to 11-0.

Here’s a quick look…

GROSSMONT 17, STEELE CANYON 14 – Joe Garcia kicked the go-ahead field goal with 40 seconds left in the game as the Foothillers advanced to play Helix in next week’s quarterfinals.

The Cougars lined up for a game-tying attempt on fourth down but went for a fake, and the long pass was just too far for the diving Steele Canyon receiver.

Grossmont led at halftime, 7-0, on a 45-yard interception return for a touchdown by Cristian Espino.

Major Givens scored on an 8-yard touchdown run in the third quarter to tie the game, then he added a 12-yard score in the fourth quarter to give the Cougars the lead.

Trenton Giles scored on a touchdown run in the fourth quarter with seven minutes to play which tied the game at 14-all.

GRANITE HILLS 31, OCEANSIDE 14 – Zak Darling had a pair of touchdown runs in the second half, including a 95-yarder in the fourth quarter, as the Eagles pulled away from a 10-7 halftime lead to advance to the Division I quarterfinals where they will face Madison next week.

Granite Hills junior Easton Peterson blocked an Oceanside field goal attempt in the first quarter and returned the ball 80 yards for a touchdown to give the Eagles a 7-0 lead.

The Eagles led at halftime, 10-7, when Darling capped a 65-yard drive on eight straight rushes with a 2-yard sprint to the pylon.

Joaquin Thomas Jr. added a short touchdown up the middle for the Eagles.

CHRISTIAN 31, SAN DIEGO 28 – The Patriots’ Jake Davila passed to long-time best bud Joey Merritt three times for touchdowns, including the go-ahead score with 42 seconds left, as Christian will move on to face top-seeded Mira Mesa in the Division II quarterfinals.

The league foes had their regular season contest canceled.

Davila had a rushing score to give the Pats a 6-0 lead in the first quarter.

After the Cavers took the lead, Merritt scored his first TD of the game on an 80-yard play. The Patriots extended the lead to 18-7 on a 5-yard reception by Merritt.

San Diego took the lead early in the third quarter but Davila’s second rushing touchdown, which came with 10 minutes left in the game, put the Pats back on top.

The Cavers scored a touchdown with two minutes left in the game for a 28-24 lead, but Davila engineered a near-flawless two-minute drill.

WEST HILLS 41, BONITA VISTA 28 – Braden Oberg passed for three touchdowns – two of them to Max Conaway – and the fifth-seeded Wolf Pack went up as much as 21-0 and 41-14 on the way to a San Diego CIF Division III win over the Barons for the team’s 13th-straight win dating back to the spring.

Diego Calderson also scored a pair of rushing touchdowns for West Hills, while Collin Dill added a rushing touchdown and Dylan Snyder also had a touchdown reception for the Pack.

The Barons made it a two-score game with just over three minutes to play.

West Hills will move on to face Ramona next Friday.

EL CAPITAN 41, ORANGE GLEN 34 (OT) – Savigon Yokley brought the Vaqueros back from a 28-19 halftime deficit to win a thrilling Division III opening-round game over the Patriots.

Yokley scored a rushing touchdown in the second half, recorded an interception inside the 10-yard line in the fourth quarter, then scored another rushing touchdown in overtime for the victory.

The county Player of the Year candidate also led a masterful game-tying drive, throwing a touchdown pass to Julian May with two minutes to play in the fourth quarter to tie the contest.

Savi and his brother, Antwone, both had a pair of interceptions for El Cap.

The Vaqueros’ Angel Diaz scored in the first quarter to the game at 7-all, then after Orange Glen went back in front, Bruce Newland found Yokley on a fade in the back left corner to even the score at 14-all.

Xavier Peace scored on a jet sweep to give El Cap a 19-14 lead with 8:32 to play in the first half.

SANTANA 24, IMPERIAL 21 (3 OT) – Santana junior Jackson Scott kicked a 28-yard field goal in the third overtime to give the Sultans the Division III first-round victory over visiting Imperial.

Logan Jorden had a 55-yard interception return for a touchdown.

The Sultans extended the lead to 14-0 just a little past the midway point of the second quarter on a 14-yard touchdown reception by Dylan Anderson from quarterback Alex Rico.

The teams combined for five missed field goals in overtime, including a close wide-left call on the Imperial’s attempt in the third overtime that had the officials beneath the crossbar deliberating for a good three seconds before concurring on the call.

EL CAJON VALLEY 21, ARMY-NAVY ACADEMY 14 – The Braves built a 21-0 lead and held on for the CIF-SDS Division V victory over the host Warriors, El Cajon Valley’s first road playoff win in 16 years.

Kal-el Gordon scored a touchdown for El Cajon Valley on a 12-yard run just 1:15 into the game after the Braves recovered an onside kick to start the game.

Daniel Jacobs had a 90-yard fumble return for a touchdown with 3:21 left in the first quarter.

The Braves’ Omar Jaimes scored on a 2-yard run in the second quarter to give the Braves a three-score lead at halftime.

The Braves’ Paris Dixon recorded his fifth interception.

LA JOLLA COUNTRY DAY 26, MOUNT MIGUEL 20 – The visiting Matadors rallied from a 20-7 halftime deficit to eventually tie the score at 20-all in the Division IV first-round game.

SWEETWATER 73, VALHALLA 6 – The “Sweeties” weren’t too kind to the Norsemen, leading 40-0 at halftime and building a 60-0 lead in the Division IV contest.

CRAWFORD 19, MOUNTAIN EMPIRE 0 – The Division V game was won by the host Colts, who led 6-0 at halftime.



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