Oceanside CA– The Pirates held off the St. Augustine Saints 28-34 last night in the season opener for both teams. The season got off to an ominous start as Oceanside Quarterback, Matt Romero fumbled the ball on the first play from scrimmage. St Augustine recovered the ball and scored two plays later when Thomas Goodridge hit Elijah Preston who was wide open at the five yard line and went in untouched. PAT was good and it was 7-0 with 11:03 left in the first quarter.
Oceanside got on the board with a long drive capped off by a two yard touchdown run by Josh Bernard. The Pirates took the lead after the first, of two interceptions by Jordan Miller had Oceanside with good field position at the Saints 46 yard line. Under pressure, a poised Matt Romero hit Davione Taylor for a 28 touchdown strike. PAT good and it was 7-14 with about three minutes left in the half.
Josh Bernard recovered a St. Augustine fumble late in the half giving the Pirates another scoring opportunity. Romero took advantage and hit Johnny Arzola and with some nifty moves, scored on the 22 yard pass extending their lead to 7-21 at the intermission.
St. Augustine had the ball to begin the second half and went right to work marching the ball down the field with Elijah Preston pounding it in from 1 yard out. PAT good 14-21 with just over nine minutes to play in the 3rd quarter. The Saints held Oceanside on the next series and it didn’t take long for them to tie the game up. Elijah Preston scored for a third time when the offensive line opened a wide hole on a draw play and Preston scurried 66 yard for the touchdown. PAT good, 21 all with 6 minutes left in the third quarter.
Oceanside had a chance to reclaim the lead after Jordan Miller made his second interception and returned the ball to the Saint 37 yard-line. The run after the interception was called back because of a holding penalty. The Pirates had two TD’s called back in the first half for the same infraction.
Despite losing the good field position on the holding call, it took less than a minute for the Pirates to march down the field and take the lead on a straight ahead run by Josh Bernard. PAT good, 21-28 with four minutes remaining in the third quarter. The Pirates scored again when they capitalized on the Saints second miscue, in as many possessions, recovering a Preston fumble at the St. Augustine 15 yard line. It was the fourth turnover of the night for the Saints.
Matthew Romero hit his third touchdown pass of the game, a 16 yard pass completion to Isaiah Paopao who made a juggling catch for the score. PAT missed 21-34 with less than three minutes left in the third quarter.
The Saints missed a field goal early in the fourth quarter but made the game interesting and pulling within 6 with 5 minutes left in the contest. Sophomore Quarterback, Rodney Thompson ran it in on a read option 28-34 with just over three minutes left to play. Oceanside was unable to move the ball, late but the defense held on to preserve the win.
The Pirates take on Mission Viejo next Friday in the 2014 Honor Bowl at 7:00pm. Mission Viejo is coming to Oceanside 0-1 after being upset at home by Liberty High School, of Bakersfield California, 18-7.
Wildcats go Down Fighting
In what looked like an auspicious start for the El Camino Wildcats under first year head coach John Roberts, senior running-back, Nick Donaldson busted up the middle for 74 yards and a touchdown on the Wildcats first play from scrimmage in 2014.
However, El Camino was unable to contain Point Loma’s Romeo Epperly and went into the locker-room down 21-20 at the half. The third quarter was scoreless and the score remained 21-20 until Point Loma kicked a field goal with 8:05 left in the game. An El Camino miscue, a fumbled lateral, opened the door for Romeo Epperly to score his second touchdown of the night, a 5 yard power run up the middle. 31-20 with 5:48 left in the game.
El Camino had no quit in them and went right back to work. A couple of scrambling runs by Sergio Lopez and a long, Lopez to Dante Dreisbach, completion led to another touchdown run by Nick Donaldson. Two point conversion was good, 31-28 with 3:55 left in the game.
El Camino’s comeback hopes were dashed when Romeo Epperly broke left and ran 48 yards for the score, ending the game 38-28.
Coach John Roberts saw some bright spots in his debut as leader of the Wildcats. “There was no quit in this group” said Roberts “Our ‘O’line play was great. I was impressed by our quarterback play and leadership.”
El Camino travels to Mira Mesa next week. The Marauders (1-0 ) beat Escondido, on the road 36-28.
Other local Scores
Carlsbad – 21
Great Oak – 38
Bonita Vista- 6
Rancho Buena Vista- 28
University City- 18
Scripps Ranch- 16
San Marcos- 35
Corona del Mar- 38
La Costa Canyon- 0