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November 28, 2006 > Hayward edges Irvington of Fremont to advance to 3A East Bay football final

Hayward edges Irvington of Fremont to advance to 3A East Bay football final

by Jim Sigafoose and Biff Jones

In a battle of two TCV Area teams, the Farmers of Hayward defeated the Vikings of Irvington 23-21 last Friday, November 24 at Sunset Campus Field in Hayward.  The game, played in the 3A East Bay Division (schools with enrollment 1601-2100 in grades 9-12) of the North Coast Section (NCS), was for the right to advance to the championship game next Saturday, December 2, 7:00 p.m. at Dublin High School, 8151 Village Parkway, Dublin.

Hayward entered the game as the top seed in the eight team bracket and improved its record to11-1, after competing in the Hayward Area Athletic League during the regular season.  Irvington was the fourth seed and fell to a record of 8-4.  They competed in the Mission Valley Athletic League in the regular season.

After a scoreless first quarter, Hayward opened the scoring with a second quarter touchdown and extra point (PAT).  The score stayed that way until Irvington answered with a touchdown of its own on the final play of the first half, followed by a successful PAT, to make the score 7-7 at the break.

The second half saw the lead change hands each time a team scored.  Hayward went up 10-7 on a field goal followed by a Viking touchdown and PAT to make it 14-10.  Late in the fourth quarter the Farmers again took the lead 17-14 with a touchdown and PAT.  Irvington stormed back when quarterback JT Ramos, on fourth down and eight yards to go for a first down, hit Tyler Broom with a 48 yard touchdown pass that left 3:31 to play in the game.  The PAT made it 21-17.  After the ensuing kick-off, Hayward quarterback, Robert Romero, connected on a 52 yard pass and run to the Irvington one yard line that included a brilliant one-handed catch and run down the side-line by Joe Moore.  The Farmers then punched the ball in from the one with less than two minutes to go in the contest.  The PAT was no good and Hayward’s lead was a precarious two points, 23-21.  A last ditch effort by the Vikings to make yet another comeback was thwarted when a Ramos pass was intercepted in Hayward territory.

This was the last time Irvington coach, Bob Spain, would coach the Vikings as he will be moving on to New Dougherty Valley High in San Ramon next year.

For Hayward, it is on to the 3A East Bay Championship Game next week against Alhambra of Martinez.  Alhambra is the number three seed and also improved its record to 11-1.  This week Alhambra defeated number two seed and previously undefeated Pinole Valley 27-20.  Alhambra plays out of the Diablo Foothill Athletic League.

For the first time, the 3A East Bay Champ will play the 3A Redwood Empire (enrollment 1401 and above, grades 9-12) Champ for the NCS 3A Championship.  The game will be played on Friday, December 8 at 7:00 p.m. in Marin County at Santa Rosa High School.  The 2A East Bay Champ and 2A Redwood Empire Champ with also face off for the first time in the NCS 2A Championship at 4:00 p.m. on Saturday, December 9 at the Oakland Coliseum.  That game will be followed by the NCS 4A (enrollment 1601 and above) Championship Game at 7:15 p.m.  The NCS 4A game pits undefeated De La Salle of Concord and the Bay Valley Athletic League against undefeated Foothill of Pleasanton and the East Bay Athletic League.

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