Seniors are emotional after heartbreaking loss to rival Sequoia


Josh Barde

Carlmont lines up, ready to snap the ball on second down.

In their last game of the season, the Scots suffered a 38-28 defeat to rival Ravens in a game where the Scots were only able to force a change in possession once.

Although it was an unfortunate loss in what was the last Carlmont football game for many senior Scots, it was only fitting that Jonaven Kuhn, a senior, led the team in both rushing and receiving yards. Wes Brown, a senior, also caught his sixth touchdown reception of the season in the game.

Kuhn ran for 91 yards on ten carries, as well as adding five receptions for 72 yards and a touchdown. Simon Talauati, a senior, rushed for 189 yards and three touchdowns on 24 carries for the Ravens, his efforts getting him over the 1000-yard rushing mark for the season.

“All the credit goes to the linemen. They help me move forward and strive for success, and I got 1000 yards this year all because of the linemen. It was a team effort, and they deserve the credit,” Talauati said.

The game was tight, with the teams scoring back-and-forth to reach a 21-21 tie at halftime.

Pullquote Photo

We had a ton of guys injured and playing in backup roles, and they did their very best. That’s all you can ask for.”

— Jake Messina, head coach

The Scots opened up scoring in the first half, capping off a 70-yard drive with a 17-yard touchdown catch by Brown.

The Ravens seemed to have a quick response when quarterback Kyle Parker, a junior, ran the ball 89 yards for a touchdown, but it was called back due to a holding. However, Parker still scored on a 16-yard rush later in the drive.

Carlmont seemed to take the lead back on a one-yard rush by Dane Fifita, a sophomore. But just as soon as they took the lead, they lost it when Sequoia scored on the kickoff return by Steven Stone, a junior.

“All it took was teamwork, just like how in school you do group work. Everybody pitches in, and everybody knows their job,” Talauati said. “Over the year, we all became closer, and we started calling each other brothers in the second game; we all love each other, and we’re all family.”

Just before halftime, each team tacked on another seven points, with Carlmont scoring on a two-yard touchdown run by Fifita, followed by Sequoia scoring on a one-yard run by Talauati, his first of three scores of the night.

Josh Barde
Carlmont offense huddles up to discuss the game plan.

“We had mistakes that we could’ve fixed, but we messed up mentally, and we didn’t prepare enough. The coaches did everything they could, and we fought hard,” Fifita said. “We played physical but not physical enough, and we couldn’t take down Talauati. The physicality wasn’t there, and they just took advantage of it.”

As soon as halftime ended, the Ravens picked up where they left off, driving 67 yards and scoring on a seven-yard touchdown rush by Talauati.

After no response from the Scots, the Ravens got the ball back on an interception and kicked a field goal, extending their lead to 31-21 with 4 minutes and 7 seconds left in the third.

The Scots’ second-half struggles continued, and they found themselves unable to score until Kuhn scored on a 14-yard catch and run late in the forth. But the score came too late, as Sequoia had scored on their previous drive from a 14-yard rush by Talauati.

Pullquote Photo

Being a Scot has taught me to be a better person and be more polite and be more of a high character guy.”

— Jonaven Kuhn, Carlmont senior

Carlmont’s last hope came on an onside kick but was to no avail when the Ravens recovered it and proceeded to kneel and end the game victorious, 38-28.

“We are more consistent now, and early in the year, we had a lot of seniors but not a lot of experience, and we only had a few kids who had significant minutes last year,” said Rob Poulos, Sequoia’s head coach. “There was a lack of confidence, and it was hard to stop where things went wrong because the kids weren’t used to success.”

The Scots finished the season 3-7, a drastic change from last year’s playoff season.

“All of the kids that made it through fought until the very end, and I was proud of them. We had a ton of guys injured and playing in backup roles, and they did their very best. That’s all you can ask for,” said Jake Messina, Carlmont’s head coach.

The Ravens finished 5-5 and were able to recapture the Terremere trophy from the Scots.

More Turnover Problems

The Scots recent turnover troubles carried over into their loss against Sequoia. Tim Netane threw two more interceptions, and the Scots turned it over on downs once, giving them three total turnovers on the day. Sequoia, on the other hand, was flawless and did not commit a single turnover.

Senior Night

It was senior night for the Scots, and not only was it these seniors’ last football game as a Scot, but it also was their last game in front of their home crowd. For many of these seniors, like Kuhn, this game marks the end of their four-year journey.

Pullquote Photo

Losing the trophy will give us an opportunity to grind harder and push us to get that trophy back and win.

— Dane Fifita, Carlmont sophomore

“I’ve been playing since I was a freshman, and this program has been the best part of my life. I made so many friends and brothers, and I wish it could keep going on,” Kuhn said. “I think we did pretty well, and I love this program.”

However, just because his football career may be over, Kuhn doesn’t plan on forgetting everything he learned as a Scot.

“Being a Scot has taught me to be a better person and be more polite and be more of a high-character guy. When I meet somebody, I should let off as somebody who doesn’t think he’s higher or better than somebody else,” Kuhn said.

While it may not have turned out to be the season that everyone desired, these seniors still got to be a part of Carlmont’s historic playoff team last year.

“As juniors, they were part of one of the greatest teams this school has ever had, and that’s a heck of an accomplishment. They had to inherit moving up in leagues and taking up a difficult schedule, and I think they did the best they could,” Messina said.


Carlmont and Sequoia have had a competitive rivalry for a long time, and to fuel that rivalry every year, they play a game to decide who keeps the Terremere Trophy. The trophy was started in 1955 and has been passed between the two high schools ever since.

Since the rivalry started, Sequoia has won 34 times, and Carlmont has won 31 times. The proximity between the two shows just how important winning is to the players.

Last year, Carlmont won 14-7 in a very hard-fought game in which many of the graduating seniors played in as well.

“Losing the trophy will give us an opportunity to grind harder and push us to get that trophy back and win,” Fifita said.