Sports

Spartans stymie Paly; LA & Pinewood fall; SF game postponed

Chris Burton
Samantha Zahga/Special to the Town Crier
Pinewood quarterback Eric Burton looks to pass in Friday’s game against Woodside Priory.

The Mountain View High football team overcame a last-minute change of venue and nearly being stranded at Palo Alto High to beat the Vikings 38-21 Saturday night.

The Spartans arrived at Paly to find the power was out, and by the time the decision was made to move the game to Mountain View, the team bus had already left. The Spartans waited nearly an hour for the bus to return, coach Shelley Smith said, and Paly – which carpooled over – got to Mountain View 45 minutes before they did. When the game finally kicked off at approximately 8:15 p.m., Smith had concerns about how ready his team was to play.

“With all the distractions, I didn’t know what to expect,” he said. “Then we had that great start.”

Mountain View’s Andrew Lopez returned the opening kickoff 82 yards for a touchdown.

Lopez added a 1-yard TD run late in the first quarter.

The Spartans held a 14-13 lead late in the second quarter and extended the advantage just before halftime. Mason Davies recovered a fumble at Paly’s 27, and Trent Steffen threw a touchdown pass to Julian Daniels a play later. Josh Lillie’s extra point made it 21-13 with five seconds left in the half.

The lead grew to 31-13 in the third quarter after Lillie booted a 23-yard field goal and Davies breached the goal line on a 3-yard run.

Leo Navarro’s 19-yard scoring scamper in the fourth quarter, coupled with another PAT by Lillie, pushed the lead to 38-13 with four minutes left in the fourth.

The win marked Smith’s first against Paly in his nine years at Mountain View, which improved to 2-0 in the Santa Clara Valley Athletic League De Anza Division.

“This is what we’re expecting,” the coach said of the Spartans’ success. “This is great for our program.”

Priory takes down Pinewood again

Pinewood’s brief eight-man football season came to a close with Friday’s 36-20 loss at rival Woodside Priory.

The Panthers finished 0-2, having lost to Priory at home 40-12 the week before.

Eagles upended by Falcons

While Los Altos coach Dave DeGeronimo said he was pleased with the Eagles’ effort on defense, his team’s offense made too many mistakes to beat Saratoga in Saturday’s SCVAL El Camino Division contest.

Visiting Los Altos threw three interceptions – one of which the Falcons returned for a touchdown – in the 27-20 loss.

The Eagles also recorded a pick six, courtesy of Cole Rafferty (40-yard return), and “we had three or four defensive stops on fourth down,” DeGeronimo said. “That was exciting.”

Two of those stops came in the fourth quarter with Los Altos trailing by a touchdown.

The Eagles (1-1) drove inside Saratoga’s 20 after the initial fourth-quarter stop, only to throw an interception.

Highlights for the Los Altos offense included Dre Caputo’s 60-yard touchdown pass to Tom Schumann in the second quarter, Caputo’s 30-yard scoring strike to Zach Fagin in the third and the running of Min Park, who

DeGeronimo said averaged 5 yards per carry before leaving the game late with an injury.

SFHS game postponed

About six hours before kickoff, St. Francis officials announced Friday’s home game against rival Bellarmine had been canceled over COVID-19 concerns.

In an email, assistant athletic director Chris Volta wrote that St. Francis “received word from Bellarmine that due to positive COVID cases in their JV and varsity programs, we are not able to play our scheduled JV and varsity football games.”

In a follow-up email to the Town Crier that evening, St. Francis athletic director Michael Pilawski said the varsity game will be rescheduled for 7 p.m. April 23 or April 24 at St. Francis; the exact date will be confirmed soon.

Friday’s game was supposed to be the West Catholic Athletic League opener for both teams.

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