Jefferson battles Carlmont for the win


Bijan Khalili

Quarterback senior Steven Palthe snaps the ball for senior Jake Kumamoto to run.

Bijan Khalili, ScotCenter Sports/Columnist

Carlmont (1-1 PAL Lake, 2-4 overall) hosted Jefferson (2-0, 5-1) Friday night in what seemed to be more of a battle than a game with the final score 21-14 in Jefferson’s favor.

Neither teams could get any offensive momentum going early, ending the first half with a 7-0 lead off of a 13-yard pass from Grizzlies quarterback Damari Cual-Davis to Roshawn Livingston.

“It was really slow because their [Carlmont’s] offense had the ball,” said Grizzlies head coach Will Maddox. “I told my team at halftime, we’ve got to make plays on defense and get our offense the ball.”

At the start of the third quarter, the tides seemed to turn in Carlmont’s favor with the Scots’ two kickoff fumble recoveries leading to a 3-yard rushing touchdown by senior Jake Kumamoto and a 31-yard rushing touchdown by senior Cutler Pons. The Scots took the lead with a score of 14-7.

“Basically, we were kicking into the wind. Going deep wouldn’t have ended well, so we targeted someone and went short,” said kicker senior Camron Dennler. “I think it really pumped everyone up to be able to get back on offense with that.”

The Grizzlies quickly stormed back with a 14-yard touchdown by Cual-Davis and a 45-yard punt return for a score by David Benjamin Jr. to seal the game.

“All we needed was a spark,” said Maddox. “We needed someone to make a big play, spark the team, and we would do the rest.”

In the final quarter the Scots did everything they could to get back into the game, but came up short.

“We couldn’t get anything clicking, and the turnovers started to add up,” said tight-end senior Nico Ferrario. “Time took its toll, and we were in a situation where winning was out of our hands.”

With another win, Jefferson continues to power their way toward reaching their goal of a PAL championship.

“Championship teams find ways to win the ugly games and ways to win the close games,” said Maddox. “When we play as one team fighting to the end, good things happen.”

Carlmont will look to take on Mills at home next Friday, Oct. 23, at 7 p.m.