Varsity football tastes victory under San Rafael lights

Ben Suliteanu

The San Rafael Bulldogs take the field during the second quarter, determined to hang in the game.

The bus ride over to San Rafael was one of subdued contemplation and concentration Friday night, Sept. 14. It was a must-win for the boys’ varsity football team.

A San Rafael defender picks up Israel Namastere’s mouth-guard and returns it to him. Henderson said that the tension that has existed between the two teams is a thing of the past.

That night they delivered, making swift work of the San Rafael Bulldogs, jumping quickly to a 27 point lead at half, and ultimately winning by a score of 53-6.

“This is the Redwood team we knew we had,” said head coach Corky Henderson. “Tonight we had everything come together.”

Defensive turnovers were a key to the game with the Giants scoring three times off of turnovers.

“We knew we had a chance to get the ball on defense. We were just clawing all game,” said Louis Knox, senior, who had a 50-yard touchdown return in the second quarter after Matt Blum knocked the ball loose from a San Rafael ball carrier.

However, Redwood’s usually-dominant players were not the only ones putting points up on the board.

Receiver Zach Chayra landed his first touchdown reception of the season off of a four yard pass from quarterback Zach Dubin, and junior Jack Cathcart scored his first-ever Redwood touchdown off of a pick-six, earning one of their three defensive scores.

“San Rafael never quit, so we couldn’t quit,” Henderson said.

Although the Giants had a 33-6 lead at halftime, they did not let up in the second half.

Senior Henry Mesker returned an onside kick for a touchdown to open the second half. Junior Khari Haynes punched the ball in on a six yard rushing touchdown later that half.

Redwood is now 1-3 overall, and 1-0 in MCAL rankings. They will face Marin Catholic in two weeks.

“We’ve tasted victory,” shouted linebackers coach J.J. Davis in the final huddle. “Now let’s salivate for more.”

Players share stories on the sidelines during the third quarter. There was an optimistic air on the bench tonight.
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The Redwood defense attempts to strip the ball loose from the San Rafael running back. Turnovers were key in shifting the momentum in Redwood’s favor.
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