Prep Football: Cougars shutdown Mustangs, capture third Severance Bowl

Christopher's Jacob Moen works to outrun a tackle by Gilroy's Jimmy Pena during the Severance Bowl.

GILROY — First Trevor Bearden, now Brandon Boyd. If you didn’t believe the Christopher defense was for real, here’s your proof.
The Cougars have now successfully shutdown the Central Coast Section’s top two running backs, holding them both to under 40 yards — the latest being Boyd in the Cougars 43-14 win Friday at the Garcia-Elder Sports Complex.
Boyd was held to just 32 yards and 13 carries and a touchdown in the game. The win gives Christopher its third Severance Bowl title in as many years.
“They know he’s (Boyd) a strong back and we take that challenge and we did what we did earlier in the year with the Live Oak kid (Bearden),” Cougars coach Tim Pierleoni said. “We really, really feel that if you want to run the ball against us, it’s going to be a long night.”
But it wasn’t just the running game the Cougars shut down. The defense kept the pressure on Gilroy’s David Munoz all night, forcing him to throw two interceptions — both of which were picked off by free safety Bryant Huynh.
“We just came out to play football. We’re giving 110 percent every single play,” Huynh said. “(I was just thinking) ‘I’ve just got to take that ball and go — take it and go’.”
Sterling Montgomery shined in his final Severance Bowl, going 18 for 26 for 291 yards, an interception and three touchdowns. It was bittersweet for the senior, who rang the bell for the final time, but he said he was proud of his team for powering through for the win.
“A whole bunch of us are sore; it was a fight the whole way through,” Montgomery said. “Coming out of the lockerroom in the second half, we needed to have the mindset of ‘We have to finish this game’. …Being able to ring the bell one last time, this will be something I’ll remember. I’ll never forget this game and never forget this memory.“
One of Montgomery’s favorite targets was junior Max Sanford, who he found four times for 105 yards and two touchdowns — for 34 and 30 yards.
Sanford’s last time was for the final Christopher (6-3 overall, 3-2 in league) score, putting the Cougars ahead 43-8 at that point.
“We want to keep this going and continue what we started,” Sanford said. “We want to continue on this tradition of winning Severance Bowls and ringing that bell.”
But to Pierleoni, it wasn’t just the Severance Bowl that was won tonight. After picking up wins against Sobrato (36-6) and Live Oak (28-8) in Weeks 1 and 2, respectively, and Gilroy on Friday, Pierleoni believes the Cougars deserve the title of South Valley Champions.
“There’s a mythical South Valley championship out there and I think we just won it,” he said. “That’s another thing that I’m really excited about. We played every team in the South Valley here and we’ve come out on top and we’re very proud of that.”
Penalties plagued both teams, but clearly more on than other. Eleven flags were against Gilroy (5-4, 3-2), resulting in a loss of 110 yards as opposed to Christopher’s nine penalties for 65 yards.
But that’s not all.
There was also a questionable call from officials, ruling a pass from Munoz to Boyd incomplete in the end zone as time expired in the third quarter, robbing Gilroy of its momentum.
“We just got beat. They beat us, we beat ourselves a little bit,” Mustangs coach Brian Boyd said. “We got beat by two teams tonight — the officials were one of them. It went that way all night — we couldn’t get any calls at all. We just weren’t getting anything out there, but that’s part of the game. It just seems that we get that every single week for us, but this week was extremely bad.
“It was unfortunate for the boys, the seniors, it’s too bad. …It’s frustrating. It’s hard to swallow. I actually feel sick to my stomach right now. It’s really hard to swallow.”
Sophomore Munoz finished 11 for 23 for 161 yards, a touchdown and two interceptions. Even though he wasn’t able to get much done, the QB still said he was proud of how his O-line performed. The Mustangs have still not allowing a sack on Munoz through nine weeks of play. 
“It (the pressure) was coming in, but our guys just make me feel better,” Munoz said. “Yeah, it was coming in — they protect me.”
The two teams will look to keep their playoff hopes alive in the regular season finale next week. Christopher will travel to North Monterey County, taking on the winless Condors (0-9, 0-5) at 2 p.m. Saturday.
“We’ve got to take it one play at time, one day at a time and practice hard and keep the morale up,” Montgomery said. “(We’ve got to) come out and play with that fire that we all have inside of us. We’ll just see where it goes from there.”
Gilroy will close out the regular season at home, celebrating Senior Night as it hosts North Salinas (6-3, 4-1) at 7:30 p.m. Friday.
The Mustangs think they have a better shot at taking down the Vikings team that has only lost to the undefeated Everett Alvarez — and Monterey Bay League Pacific champions — in league play.
“That’s a good team, ” Boyd said. “We actually think they’re better than (Everett) Alvarez. …We’ve got to regroup real fast and get a win. Even if we don’t, we’re hoping we can still squeak into the playoffs at 5-5. We’re going to give it our all. It’s Senior Night and there should be a big crowd.”
Christopher 43, Gilroy 14
Christopher    19   0   17  7 — 43
Gilroy                0   0   8   6—   14
CHS — Rayshon Mills 8-yard run (PAT no good), 8:06
CHS — Mills 25-yard run (PAT no good), 4:18
CHS — Mills 12-yard run (Raul Meza kick), 3:25
GHS — Bubba Lara 9-yard pass from David Munoz (2-pt. conversion), 10:05
CHS — Alex Pachecho 28-yard pass from Sterling Montgomery (Meza kick), 6:24
CHS — Max Sanford 34-yard pass from Montgomery (Meza kick), 5:10
CHS — Meza field goal, 1:36
CHS — Sanford 30-yard pass from Montgomery (Meza kick), 8:48
GHS — Boyd 4-yard run (PAT no good), 7:09
TEAM STATISTICS
CHS               GHS
First downs                20                   9
Rushes-Yards           37-146           15-21
Passing yards            291                 161
Comp.-Att.-Int.          18-27-1          11-23-2
Fumbles-Lost            1-1                  2-2
Penalties-Yards         9-65                11-110
INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS
RUSHING — Christopher: Rayshon Mills 26-139; Sterling Montgomery 6-minus 19; Raul Tovar III 2-11; Trevor Hadnot 5-15; Gilroy: Brandon Boyd 13-32; Emilio Chambers 1-2; Jakob Method 1-minus 13
PASSING — Christopher: Sterling Montgomery 18-26-1 291; Rayshon Mills 1-0-0 0; Gilroy: David Munoz 11-23-2 161
RECEIVING — Christopher: Phillip Castro 3-18; Jacob Moen 4-75; Trevor Hadnot 1-6; Max Sanford 5-105; Tyler Fhurong 2-12; Alex Pachecho 1-28; Tyson Hill 1-6; Gilroy: Jakob Method 1-minus 3; Patrick Hsu 1-14; Jose Salazar 3-72; Brandon Boyd 2-44; Emilio Chambers 1-1; Bubba Lara 3-21
DEFENSE — Fumble recoveries: Christopher 2 (Rayshon Mills, Jacob Zimmerman); Gilroy 1 (Jimmy Pena); Interceptions: Christopher 2 (Bryant Huynh) Gilroy 1 (Emilio Chambers)
RECORDS — Christopher 6-3, 3-2 MBPL; Gilroy 5-4, 3-2 MBPL 

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