Varsity football crushed by Sonoma in opener

Miles Anderson

The varsity team leaves the field at half time. They were down over 20 points at the half.

The varsity football team walked into the stadium in Sonoma on Aug. 24, expecting a lopsided win over the Sonoma Valley Dragons.

Three hours later, they walked away dejected, having been offensively and defensively manhandled in a 36-0 opening night loss.

“We knew what was coming from every formation so they didn’t surprise us,” head coach Corky Henderson said, “but where we got beat was guys that didn’t pay attention during the week.”

The problem was one of discipline: the Giants committed 118 yards worth of penalties in the game, muffed a punt return on the one-yard line that led to a safety, and conceded another safety after a wayward snap on a punt attempt.

The offensive line holds off Sonoma rushers to give quarterback Carl Mesker more time in the backfield.

Even more disappointing was Redwood’s offensive performance. The team gained a total of 77 yards of offense against the Dragons, with the passing game yielded just six yards.

“Our passing game is scary right now-it needs a lot of work,” Henderson said.

On the other hand, Sonoma Valley erupted offensively, scoring 36 points behind four total touchdowns from junior quarterback Dan Deely.

Senior Joe Perrella said that Redwood would focus intensely during the next week after such a lopsided loss.

“A loss is always disappointing,” Perrella said.  “But right now we’re just going to try to focus on the good things that we did and learn from our mistakes.”

Their lack of focus reared its head from the opening snap.

Sonoma Valley took the early lead following an interception by junior quarterback Carl Mesker. After consecutive touchdowns by the Dragons, Redwood found themselves in a 22-0 hole midway through the second quarter.

Behind Deely, Sonoma Valley continued to frustrate the Giant defense in the fourth quarter, going up 28-0 after yet another passing touchdown.

Running back Khari Haynes evades a tackle on the line of scrimmage

Late in the fourth quarter, Deely threw a pass towards the end zone intended for a Dragon receiver, but the football deflected off him and a Giant defender before landing in another Dragon receiver’s arms.

Henderson said that play summed up the loss perfectly.
“Look at that play in the end zone, I was like ‘what more could go wrong!’ Henderson said. “Everything that could go wrong did go wrong tonight, and we’re going to correct it.”

Redwood next faces Alameda in an away game this Friday, Aug. 31.