Gilroy holds first parade to honor champs

Not one, but two CCS football trophies in the same year will be celebrated by Gilroyans with a big parade next weekend.
Parents and coaches of Gilroy and Christopher football players were still putting the details together this week, but they urged fans to mark the date and the time, Sunday, Dec. 17 at 1pm, for a big community celebration of the twin victories last weekend: Christopher won the Division IV Central Coast Section title, and Gilroy won the Division V title, capping an unbeaten season.
Mayor Roland Velasco said he’s attending and urged everyone to join him.
“This is huge because Gilroy (GHS and CHS) has never won a championship,” he wrote on his Facebook page this week. “Now we have two teams that won!”
“This is an opportunity to celebrate our kids and our community,” he said.
The Mustangs captured their first football title by defeating Menlo School 38-21 on Friday, Dec. 1 at Westmont High in Campbell and completed a perfect 13-0 season.
When the Division V championship was on the line, the Gilroy football team turned to the players who already knew what it takes to win a CCS title.
Joseph Barnes rushed for 234 yards and five touchdowns and Tony Andrade had four sacks on defense and recovered two fumbles. Both have CCS wrestling titles under their belts. Now they and the rest of the Gilroy team can call themselves CCS football champions.
“This is one of the top ones,” Barnes said of how this ranked with his two CCS wrestling titles. “We never won a CCS title in football, obviously, it feels great.”
Tyler Davis ran for 163 yards and two touchdowns and Ethan Crawford had two interceptions on Dec. 2 as Christopher brought home its first CCS championship with a 24-7 win over Leland.
The Cougars, 11-2 overall, secured the Division IV crown on the same field where Gilroy won the night before.
Christopher’s win featured a suffocating defense and a run game that wouldn’t relent.
The water flew into the air and was dumped onto the back of coach Tim Pierleoni, celebrating the completion of a turnaround for Christopher, which just the year before suffered through a 1-9 season.
The three playoffs wins that clinched the CCS title, fittingly, were the same number of wins the Cougars amassed the prior two years combined.
“We’ve been talking about this since last January,” Crawford said. “The last two years were hard, going 2-8 and 1-9 and suffering that loss to Gilroy (on Oct. 6) really hurt, so it was just a bitter taste in our mouths we were just trying to get rid of.”
After the game, Pierleoni reminded the team it had been in playoff mode long before the playoffs actually started.
The Cougars had dropped back-to-back league games, but ran the table the rest of the season.
Beginning in fall 2018, the Severance Bowl moves to a regularly scheduled league game, as both Christopher and Gilroy will be in the top division a new super league, the Pacific Coast Athletic League.
The new league will fully merge the teams from Monterey, San Benito and Santa Cruz counties, along with Gilroy and Christopher, and Oakwood in Morgan Hill. The new league will have four football divisions, based on the quality of play. This year’s CCS success assured Christopher and Gilroy of spots in the top division.

1 COMMENT

  1. i think including the GHS wrestling team…it is .like 15 years straight CCS champs. this is as impressive as as winning the CCS football.

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