Football ends with loss to Carmel in CCS Quarterfinals

November 25, 2019 — by Siva Sambasivam and Leo Cao

After one of the better seasons in recent memory, the Falcons finished first in the lower El Camino league with an overall 8-2 record and earned a trip to the Division 4 CCS playoffs, but their high-powered offense couldn’t bail them out in their quarterfinal round matchup vs. Carmel at Monterey Peninsula College on Nov. 15. 

The Falcons, seeded No. 6, lost to the  No. 3 Padres 62-43.

The Padres exploded offensively early, scoring a touchdown on a 73-yard quarterback sneak three plays into the game. They stayed committed to the run and scored five touchdowns on the ground in total.

The Falcons stayed in the game during the first few quarters, only trailing by three points at halftime. However, second-half lapses, including giving up a fourth-down conversion combined with two fourth-quarter turnovers, effectively sealed the game for the Padres. 

Still, the Falcons ended the season proud of what they had accomplished this year.

“We left it all out there,” said senior wide receiver George Bian, who ended his football career as one of the school’s top wide receivers statistically. “We may have come up short in the end, but overall we had a very good season.”

Senior quarterback Payton Stokes put the team on his back for the first three quarters, and although he had two interceptions in crunch time, he had a final stat line for the ages.

Stokes threw for 470 yards and three touchdowns, while also rushing for 205 yards and adding two more touchdowns on the  ground. As terrific as Stokes was, these kinds of performances have become the norm for him during this year. 

Stokes led CCS in virtually every passing category, completing 67 percent of his passes for 3,020 yards and 36 touchdowns. Perhaps more impressively, Stokes did this all after battling through a hip condition that began last year.

After his junior season, Stokes learned he suffered from osteoid osteoma, a bone tumor in his left hip that he worried would keep him from playing his senior season. However, a procedure performed by Stanford University doctors helped him Stokes return for his stellar season. The doctors used high-intensity sound waves to burn away a pain-causing tumor. 

As a result, Stokes was able to put together one of the best seasons ever for a Falcon quarterback. He earned All-League Honors — but he was not the only one from SHS to receive this award. The Falcons boasted seven others on the first team and four more on the second team. 

The players who made the top squad included Bian, senior linebacker Talon Sisco, senior defensive linemen Tyler Ouchida and juniors running back Tyler Chaffin-Price and wide receiver Kelly Huesby and offensive lineman juniors Karan Vazarini and Luke Edwards. Second-team honorees were senior wide receivers Tyler Prowse and Max Muilenberg and juniors offensive lineman Richard Hernandez and linebacker Nathan Murthy.

In addition to leading the league in the number of All-League selections, the Falcons also topped the board in the number of non-seniors to earn honors. Bian thinks that the success of the juniors on the team this year will be instrumental in ensuring continuity and success for the team next year, especially with the small size of this year’s JV team.

“We are going to have a lot of returners for next year that have experience playing at the varsity level, especially with our offensive line, which is probably the most important unit,” Bian said. “While losing Stokes will probably hurt, I think [junior quarterback] Grant Petters will fill in well and we’ll be able to rely heavily on our running game as well with Chaffin-Price.”

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