Sports: Football Defeats Aragon for First League Win
The M-A Bears’ football team came off their bye week with a renewed sense of vigor and overcame the previously undefeated Aragon Dons by a final score of 28-23 for their first league win of the season.
Starting off the game, Aragon received the ball, and came through with fierce intensity on offense. After multiple passing plays for big yardage, the Dons found themselves at M-A’s ten yard line in a first and goal situation, and proceeded to work the ball into the endzone. The drive only took 2:30 off the clock, and made an early statement for Aragon. The first quarter ended with the Bears down 7-0.
Entering into the second quarter, M-A came out with a jolt of energy. After a tough start to the game for junior quarterback Royce Branning, he redeemed himself with a touchdown pass to wide receiver Evan Perkins, evening the score at seven apiece.
The Bears’ defense also came out strong in the second quarter of play. Just thirty seconds after the M-A touchdown, senior cornerback Campbell Roellig came down with an interception on the Aragon 32 yard line. Branning shortly added another touchdown pass to his stat line, this time to senior wide receiver Blake Olsen, pushing the M-A lead to 14-7. However, Aragon came back on offense with power, with a 60 yard rushing touchdown to tie up the game.
After the Dons’ kickoff, M-A drove their way into the Aragon red zone, with two minutes left in the half. Inside the ten yard line with less than 30 seconds, senior running back Tasi Teu carried the ball over the goal line, increasing the lead to 20-14, after a missed extra point. Following an Aragon field goal, the Bears entered halftime up by three points.
At the beginning of the second half, both teams started off slow. With about six minutes left in the quarter, the Bears’ defensive line swarmed the Aragon quarterback, forcing the ball to come loose. Later ruled an interception, the ball was grabbed by M-A linebacker Enzo Santos, and returned to the endzone for a touchdown. After a successful two point conversion, the Bears finished the 3rd quarter up 28-17.
With the 4th quarter underway, Aragon came back with a touchdown of their own, closing the gap to 28-23 after a failed two point conversion.
M-A found themselves with their backs against the wall yet again as Aragon sat on the ten yard line with a minute left in regulation. However the Bears’ defense came through, with a deflected pass resulting in an interception by Evan Perkins. They held onto the ball as the clock wound down, sealing the M-A victory.
“We practiced with a high tempo and put more intensity into our practices [over the past week],” said senior running back Tasi Teu in regard to the Bears’ preparation for the game.
The intensity paid off, as M-A’s offense had an impressive performance coming off a somewhat disappointing game against South San Francisco.
Defensive lineman Enzo Santos was also happy with the Bears’ performance. “We were able to ‘Bear Down,’ thats our new motto. It means taking anything that’s thrown at us…and taking control of the game.”
“When we barely won against South City, everyone was down,” said senior Alan Sakalia. “This week everybody stepped up, brought it together, and played as a family.”