Gavilan’s comeback falls short in 49-43 loss to Redwoods

GILROY – College of the Redwoods shook off a fourth-quarter comeback by Gavilan to pull out a 49-43 victory over the Rams in the season finale Saturday afternoon at Christopher High School.
After Gavilan came up with two touchdowns in a seven-minute of the fourth quarter for a 41-41 tie, Redwoods responded with a two-point conversion after a Ram fumbled snap on a PAT try resulted in a 43-41 Redwoods lead for 3:36 left in the game.
“When there was a fumbled snap, my responsibility was the kicker,” said Redwoods linebacker Kaiser Perez. “The holder tried to pass but the ball hit off the kicker’s ankle and into my hands. I had no idea I could go the distance with the interception until I spotted by teammates with to me at midfield.”
After Perez’ play gave Redwoods the lead, Corsair Ra’Quanne Dickens ran 34 yards to a touchdown with 1:59 left. The Corsairs could not convert the PAT to take a 50-41 lead, however. Gavilan had its turn coming up with a two-point conversion to get back into the game. Dalton Hall’s point-after was blocked, Gavilan recovered and moved to ball to midfield before Ram Jerome Brooks picked up the loose ball and went to distance for a Gavilan 50-43 deficit.
The Rams produced two first downs in a 70-second span to reach the Redwoods 27 with 43 seconds to play. After a Ram procedure infraction, quarterback Luke Morin’s long pass toward the endzone was intercepted by Redwoods corner Dareion Bell to end the suspense. 
“The kids fought their tails off,” said Gavilan coach Mike Dovenberg. “Things didn’t quite go our way. Offensively, I know we will be bigger and better next year. The core is there.”
Morin was limited against Redwoods, twice taking a substantial amount of time on the sideline after a facial injury. Morin can up with 266 yards passing, including two touchdowns, in a 17 for 26 showing. Sophomore Sterling Montgomery threw for 94 yards and a touchdown in a relief role.
A lot of credit goes to Gavilan,” said Redwoods coach Frank Borba. “I am proud of their team. Coach Dovenberg is building a good program. We were able to make that one extra play to get the victory.”
Both teams produced four touchdowns in the first half. Dickens scored twice with runs, while quarterback Chasen Gempeier threw a 23-yard TD pass to Avery Elrod and a 70-yard bomb to Justin Martin.
Gavilan ran a successful fake punt in the first quarter, then added four first downs on the way to a nine-yard TD to Ryan Reynolds from Montgomery to open the Ram scoring. Reynolds cruised around left end on a 21-yard reverse for a 14-14 tie with 7:12 left in the quarter. Adam Garza’s six-yard jaunt left the game tied at 21-21 with 2:33 to go. Morin ran the two-minute Ram offense at the end of the half, hitting Ronne Martin from 14 yards out with 21 seconds left. The point-after failed, leaving the Rams down 28-27 at the intermission.
Gavilan took a 29-28 lead with 6:32 left in the third quarter when a high snap on a Redwoods punt produced a safety for the home team.
The Corsairs went up 34-29 when Dickens slipped through the right side with 36 seconds left in the third quarter.
After Martin’s 39-yard run put Redwoods up 41-29 with 13:07 left, Montgomery converted one drive and Morin the other for the 41-41 deadlock going into the eventful point-after try.