Scots fall to Mustangs in close league opener


Alexander Menchtchikov

Senior running back John Hanna takes the ball for a first down during Carlmont’s final drive of the game.

Carlmont’s varsity football team played a hard-fought home game against Capuchino this Friday, but a late comeback charge was not enough to secure the win for the Scots. A late missed 2-point conversion left the score 27-25 in favor of the Mustangs in both teams’ first league game of the season.

The game featured four missed 2-point conversions, with three coming from the Scots, defining the game for them. Leading 13-7 in the first quarter, Carlmont lined up as if they were going to execute a field goal, which would only be a single point. The Scots faked the kick and threw a pass instead, ending up short of the receiver.

The first two-point decision forced Carlmont’s hand. They then tried for another two points following their next touchdown to make up for the lost points, but they failed to convert, leaving the score 19-14 in favor of Carlmont.

Capuchino scored two more touchdowns in the fourth quarter, having a 27-19 lead as Carlmont attempted to tie the game on their last drive. To tie, the Scots would’ve needed to score a touchdown and then make a two-point conversion to make the score 27-27. This would’ve send the game to overtime, during which both teams would have opportunities to take the win.

Carlmont came close, and after a passing touchdown with moments left in the fourth quarter, the score was 27-25, and the Scots had overtime in their sights. The ball was given to senior running back John Hanna for the 2-point conversion attempt, but Capuchino stuffed him at the goal line.

The Scots saw their last glimpse of hope with five seconds left on the clock as they attempted to recover an onside kick, but the ball went to the Mustangs, and the game ended.

“[Conner Cook] kicked it and it was too fast, so it hit one of our players’ legs, and [Capuchino] recovered it, so they got the ball. We had to get the ball and then get a field goal to win the game, but unfortunately, they got it instead,” said Arman Agarwal, a senior offensive lineman for Carlmont.

Senior and third-year starting quarterback Jack Wiessinger and Hanna each contributed to two of Carlmont’s four touchdowns. Junior wide receivers Elliott Weinman and Dylan Del Bono caught touchdown passes from Wiessinger, while Kiryl Rapinski, a junior wide receiver, saw the most receiving yards during the game.

We’re still here. We should’ve won the game, but one loss isn’t gonna define us.”

— Victor Nickolayev

“I think we showed everyone that we’re a strong team,” said Victor Nickolayev, a senior linebacker for Carlmont. “I think that everyone that watched the game could see that we’re a better team, and we’re just gonna keep fighting throughout the year.”

Carlmont plays in the Peninsula Athletic League’s Ocean Division, in which they finished last place the prior year. The Scots have tremendous promise, having a solid defense that was showcased against Santa Clara and an offense that could put a plethora of points on the board any given day. They carry a 3-2 overall record following their loss to the Mustangs.

“You can’t win in the Ocean Division without effort. Today’s result was deserved based on how we took the game, but it is something we can and will work on,” said Dan Nelson, one of  Carlmont’s assistant coaches.

Coming off a bye week, there was a perceived lack of effort among Carlmont’s players as the practices leading up to the Capuchino game felt overly relaxed and not focused enough on the game.

“We played hard, but I think if we stayed focused during practices and didn’t take the bye week as relaxed as we did, we could’ve gotten more out of the game,” Agarwal said.

The Scots now prepare to win their homecoming game against Terra Nova on Oct. 7 and aim to balance their record in the Ocean Division. 

“I just wanna let everyone know we’re still here. We should’ve won the game, but one loss isn’t gonna define us. We’re still gonna keep playing the whole year and we’re still gonna make playoffs,” Nickolayev said.