Varsity football ends season with heads held high


Yasmin Myers and Riley Ramirez

Friday, Nov. 15 marked the second round of CIF football playoffs against Cypress High School. This game was especially significant because of all the hard work the football team put out, but they played in honor and remembrance of senior Antonio Calderon who passed away the day before. 

Starting off the second quarter in the lead 7-0, Quarterback senior Carson Willis (number 1) handed the ball off to senior Dane Kapler (number 28) for a 16 yard run to the endzone. The Cougars scored again along with a field goal, leaving the score 17-0. To finalize the second quarter, Cypress scored their first touchdown, changing the score to 17-7.

To start the 3rd quarter, Cypress scored again, 17-13. Despite the touchdown, Cougars fought back and blocked their PAT (point after touchdown). This happened three more times during the third quarter, resulting in a score of 33-17, Cypress in the lead.

Cougars make a good run, ended by a swarm of Cypress High. Photo by: Riley Ramirez

Despite Cypress leading the scoreboard, the Cougars never gave up. During the fourth quarter, Willis (number 1) threw a 42 yard pass to wide receiver Daniel Gutierrez (number 3), who then scored, bring up the score 33-25. With a winning attitude, they recovered the ball on kickoff. 

With a few minutes left in the fourth quarter, receiver junior Cade Ledesma (number 7) successfully received a pass from Willis, leaving them one yard away from the end zone. They scored, bringing the score to 33-31.

With an attempt to recover the ball a second time during kickoff, Cypress received it and maintained it until the clock ran out of time. Cypress won the game with a final score of 33-31.

The varsity football team walked out of their with their heads held high. Running-back senior Dane Kapler shared a positive outlook on the hard-fought game. “The best moment of the game last night was coming out of the gate with a lot of energy and momentum. Though it didn’t end how we wanted to, we had a great season, and there was a really strong bond between teammates.” Kapler was also featured for Ventura High’s football program in the Ventura County Star.

After suffering an injury during the season, Willis shared his thoughts. “[This] was one of my favorite seasons, being a senior and getting to really make an impact after last year going 2-8. I felt this season was very successful.”

Defensive line pushes through Cypress’s tough offensive line. Photo by: Riley Ramirez

A sports enthusiast and active observer of games, senior Davon Nyholm shared his Cougar pride filled moments on his last high school football game. “I felt Cougar Pride when we started to come back by 16 points with 10 minutes left.”

This year in Cougar football was a huge improvement from last year. In the 2018 season, the Cougars finished with a record of 2-8. This season, the Cougars finished with an overall of 6-6. 

Senior Jadon Cline left his last game with only love for the team. “The overall season was absolutely amazing. I love the guys that I play with, we are one big family. It was the best and I personally would not trade it for the world.”

The game ended with the Cougars being a mere two points away from tying the game, 31-33. Although the game didn’t end as most would have wanted, the Cougar power shone through.