Pirates Go 13-0
Chula Vista CA— The Oceanside Pirates traveled to Southwestern College, in Chula Vista, to play Helix for the CIF San Diego Section, Open Division Championship and returned to Oceanside as Champions.
Oceanside was unable to muster much offense for most of three quarters. The Pirates didn’t make a first down until the very end of the first quarter and were only able to covert 3 first downs the entire first half. The Oceanside defense kept the Pirates in the game for the first half going into the locker room at the break down 10-3.
The Helix Highlanders got on the board first with a 37 yard field goal by Matthias Layton with 6:33 left in the first quarter. It was three and out for the Pirates on their next possession and Helix took over on their own 30, after the punt.
On the first play from scrimmage, number 2 for Helix, running-back Nathan Stinson broke through the line, cut right and sprinted 70 yards for the score. PAT good, 10-0, Highlanders with 4:34 left in the opening quarter. From there, it was a defensive battle with both teams forcing each others offense to struggle. Oceanside turned the ball over on downs in the second quarter after a Caleb Ramirez field goal attempt was wide left.
Helix began to march down the field after a nifty shuttle pass by Helix quarterback Michael Austin to Nathan Stinson went for 32 yards. There the Pirate defense held again when, on third and eleven, Amadeo West sacked Austin for a big loss, forcing Helix to punt.
The Pirate defense came up big again after Oceanside quarterback, Matt Romero was intercepted by Jihad Woods at the Oceanside 40. The Highlanders were unable to take advantage of the good field position. The Pirates engineered a drive late in the 2nd quarter that ended with 41 yard Caleb Ramirez field goal as time ran out in the half.
The Highlanders received the kick-off to begin the second half and drove the ball down to the Oceanside 24. The Pirates held Helix to a field goal. After a bad snap, Matthias Layton was able to hit from 34 yards out giving the Highlanders a 13-3 lead with 7:30 left in the 3rd quarter.
On the ensuing kick-off, The Pirates went to a hurry-up offense that threw the Highlander defense out of kilter.
Oceanside drove 72 yards in 10 plays ending with 7 yard Josh Bernard run up the middle. The PAT was good and the Helix lead was cut to three, 13-10 with 1:18 left in the third quarter.
Helix brought the kick-off back to the Highlander 34 yard-line. There, inspired play by the Oceanside defense and a sack on third down of Helix QB, Austin had the line of scrimmage back to the Highlander 28 yard-line. Oceanside partially blocked the Helix punt recovering the ball on the Highlander 40 yard-line.
Oceanside took advantage of the good field position and grabbed their first lead of the game when Romero hit Johnny Arzola, at the 9 yard-line. Arzola took it the rest of the way reaching over the pylon for the TD. PAT good, 13-17 Oceanside with 11:28 remaining in the game.
Helix head coach Troy Starr knew the importance of the Highlanders next possession. The Highlanders went for it on fourth down and inches at their own 32 yard-line but the Pirate defense came up big again and stuffed Nate Stinson for a one yard loss.
The Pirates added another 32 yard field goal extending their lead to 7.
Oceanside needed a first down late in the fourth quarter but the Helix defense held forcing the Pirates to punt giving the Highlander offense a chance to tie the game. That chance ended quickly when the punt hit a Helix player, who was back to block for the return, and the live ball was covered by Oceanside’s John Grumbling sealing the win for the Pirates.
After the game Pirate head coach John Carroll told the team “It’s not too often I can stand in front of a team and tell them I respect you” he paused and said, “I respect you.” he continued, “You refused to lose.” He said that they were only one of four teams to go undefeated in the history of Oceanside High School. “If I had a hat, my hat would be off to you.” Matt Romero said the coach told them to relax during halftime, that they were only down by a touchdown and we had a another half of football to play.
The coach gave the team Sunday off to savor the CIF title, Oceanside’s 13th under his leadership. On Monday, a ceremony will take place to honor Coach Carroll by naming the stadium at the high school in his honor [link].
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