Pittsburg turns back Los Gatos in marquee matchup

Pittsburg converts multiple fourth downs into touchdowns in East Bay vs. South Bay showdown

LOS GATOS, CA — Pittsburg defeated Los Gatos 37-27 in an intriguing matchup between two top public high school football teams from opposite ends of the Bay Area.

“These are the kinds of games we’ve struggled with in years past,” Pittsburg coach Charlie Ramirez said. “To get up like we did today and then to persevere through adversity and hold the lead until the end has been one of the big focuses for me after taking over as head coach of thie program.”

Los Gatos never took the lead, but fought back throughout. After trailing 16-0 late in the first half, the Wildcats scored two touchdowns in the final 1:05 of the second quarter to go into halftime only down 16-14. Then, in the fourth quarter, a 2-yard scoring run by Boxer Kobcsak-Yeung (20 carries, 105 yards, two touchdowns) pulled them within 23-21.

“Our effort was unbelievable,” said Los Gatos coach Mark Krail. “Got down early but we didn’t quit.”

Pitt quarterback Marley Alcantara’s ability to connect with Noah Quesada under heavy pressure and in unlikely circumstances was a key factor in Pittsburg’s victory. On fourth-and-22 from midfield in the first quarter, he intended to punt, but a bad snap caused him to complete a 38-yard pass to Quesada for a first down at the 12.

“Kind of deflating for us,” Krail commented. “You think you have them stopped and then your defense has to go back on the field.”

Three plays later, Alcantara threw an 8-yard touchdown pass to Makari Kenion, putting the game up 13-0.

Pittsburg’s offensive touchdowns in the second half came on fourth-down passes, first to Quesada for 32 yards and then to JuJu Walls for 12 yards.

“Marley is a big-time playmaker,” said Ramirez. “He has fantastic instincts and vision.” He feeds the receiving corps, running backs, and offensive line.”

Quesada had four receptions for 118 yards.

“We’ve been together since JV year,” Quesada said of his and Alcantara’s chemistry. “I consider him to be my younger brother…” We continue to collaborate and improve.”

Los Gatos quarterback AJ Minyard completed 15 of 31 passes for 262 yards and two touchdowns, one to Jaylen Thomas of 17 yards and one to Scott Garwood of 21 yards. He also intercepted two passes, one of which Jadyn Hudson returned 48 yards for a touchdown, giving the Pirates a 37-21 lead in the fourth quarter.

“Big-time players make big-time plays, especially in crucial times,” said Ramirez. “Our defensive backs are doing an excellent job of creating turnovers.” They are subjected to a great deal of stress on a weekly basis. You must play pass coverage with large leads.(Los Gatos) does an excellent job of playing maximum defense and getting receivers out. Their quarterback has excellent peripheral vision. We knew they’d be difficult when we arrived.”

Los Gatos (3-2) suffered its second defeat to a formidable out-of-section NorCal power. The Wildcats were defeated by Grant-Sacramento 22-21 on September 8.

“I told our guys, every goal we’ve set for our team — win a league championship, win a section championship, get to a NorCal game — those are right on the table for us,” Krail stated. “These two games are going to make us better than playing teams we beat handily.”

Pittsburg finished non-league play 5-0 and will open the Bay Valley Athletic League season on Friday against Deer Valley. Los Gatos opens Peninsula Athletic League Bay Division play at home against Sacred Heart Prep on Friday.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply