Falcons in a win-or-go home game against Palo Alto

November 12, 2014 — by Jihau Yu

Entering the game against Los Gatos on Nov. 7, the Falcons needed to win one of their last two games to qualify for CCS.

Entering the game against Los Gatos on Nov. 7, the Falcons needed to win one of their last two games to qualify for CCS. They’re still looking for that win after they lost 42-6 to the Wildcats, dropping their record to 4-5 overall and 2-3 in the De Anza League and making the Nov. 14 home contest versus Palo Alto a must-win game.

“It was a very disappointing loss, but that’s behind me,” senior running back Ken Wu said. ”Right now I only care about Palo Alto.”

Wu is confident that the Falcons will be able to win the game against a weaker-than-usual Palo Alto squad.

“We will get this win because we have too,” Wu said. “I won't know what to do without football, so why not extend our season?”

After receiving the kickoff from Los Gatos, the Falcons’ first offensive drive stalled and they had to punt. Los Gatos was then able to score on their first drive of the night from a 4-yard touchdown run from senior wide receiver Avivi Brender.

The Falcons struggled to stop Los Gatos’s offense throughout the night, giving up six touchdowns and forcing only one punt. Offensively the Falcons generated three first downs and only one touchdown.

The Falcons continued to struggle as the Falcons went into the half down 35-0. After receiving the kickoff after halftime, Los Gatos went on a long drive that resulted in their final touchdown of the night courtesy of a 9-yard run by senior running back Nick Stojanovich.

The Falcons ended up scoring a touchdown in the waning moments of the game, when sophomore quarterback Will Liddle threw a 26-yard touchdown pass to senior running back Jordan Vogel.

Before the loss to Los Gatos, the Falcons won a nonleague game against Los Altos 49-20 on Oct. 31.

The Falcons came out strong, outscoring their opponents 28-7 in the first quarter. Liddle, who completed 12-22 passes for 257 yards and three touchdowns, threw his first when he connected with senior wide receiver Joey Medeiros for 63-yard touchdown. 

Later in the first quarter, Liddle connected with a 25-yard touchdown to junior wide receiver Vinny Faylor. Following senior kicker Robby Gragnola’s extra point, the Falcons led 14-0.  Wu also ran for two first-half touchdowns and ended up with 120 rushing yards.

The Falcons went into halftime ahead 35-14. In the third quarter, the Falcons added to their lead by scoring two touchdowns via a Liddle 31-yard touchdown pass to Vogel and a 12-yard touchdown pass with backup senior quarterback Evan Lindeman connecting with sophomore receiver Brian Tatman.  

The Falcons ended the night with 570 yards of total offense that resulted in seven touchdowns.

“It was a team effort for sure,” Medeiros said. “We had six different people that scored and that shows how we have a well rounded offense.”

This win came after a Homecoming victory against Monta Vista on Oct. 24 by a score of 37-28.

After losing last year’s Homecoming game and suffering back-to-back losses against football powerhouses Milpitas and Wilcox, the Falcons were determined to win this game.

“It was important to the coaching staff and the players to send our seniors out with a homecoming win,” coach Tim Lugo said. “Quad dances and all that is fun, but our guys saw first hand last year that none of that matters if they don’t win the game at the end of the week.”

Liddle completed 21-30 of his passes for 235 yards and three touchdowns. Medeiros caught all the receiving touchdowns, in addition to his eight receptions for 118 yards.  Wu had 83 yards rushing and two touchdowns for the Falcons.

Medeiros said that he was trying to do anything to get the Falcons the win.

“It didn't matter whether I was catching or making a block, as long as someone on our team is scoring and making a play, I'm happy,” Medeiros said.

Lugo attributed the success of their attack to the stellar play of the offensive line of seniors Austin Bakke and Ted Rothschild, junior Adam Camp and sophomores Jesse Chung and Tony Ramirez, who allowed the Falcons to gain almost 440 yards of total offense. 

Lugo also said that the Falcons play in the De Anza division and three of the teams in the league are ranked in Top 10 in section [CCS], making wins hard to come by.

“We’re pretty good, but our competition is very good,” Lugo said. “It’s the best public school division in the section, so it’s not we’re losing to lower end El Camino (the lower division) teams.”

Regardless of the season’s results, Lugo has been impressed with the team’s progress.

“We’re well ahead of where I thought we’d be and that’s because our guys have bought in and play hard for each other,”  Lugo said. “It’s a tough game, and our guys aren’t afraid to compete, which is why I love this team.”