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Mission San Jose Football Falls Just Short in Dramatic Finish

By Marisa Lenci

September 6, 2012

On Thursday, the Mission San Jose [MSJ] varsity football team played Ygnacio Valley (YV) High School in a preseason game. Although they lost, it was a nail-biter all the way up to the last four seconds of the game.

In the first quarter, YV came out strong against MSJ’s defense, scoring their first touchdown in the first few minutes of the game on a rush by the quarterback, and executing a two point conversion to make the score 0-8. MSJ came back on the next drive with a long rush by Ismail Shafi up to YV’s 20 yard line, but had to settle for a field goal kicked by Eric Gonzalez. YV quickly came back and scored again with a 30-yard rush for another touchdown and two-point conversion, making the score 3-16.

In the second quarter, YV scored another touchdown but failed to complete the two-point conversion, setting the score at 3-22. However, MSJ’s offense stepped it up in the second quarter with another long run from Shafi, this time for a touchdown. Shafi would score again in the half, as would James Gao, after two successful long drives. The two scoring drives were highlighted by a 58-yard pass from quarterback Tamim Sarwary to Shafi, and a 31-yard rush by Saleem Karim. Going into halftime, MSJ had come back and was in the lead, 23-22.

In the third quarter, MSJ’s defense started to fall back apart. YV came out strong again and scored quickly, making the score 23-29. YV then scored again not long after the previous touchdown, and again later in the quarter after a five-yard rushing touchdown. Going into the final quarter, YV led 23-42.

Although MSJ was well behind to start the fourth quarter, they were determined to fight back. Sarwary started off MSJ’s next drive with a 30-yard scramble to YV’s 30 yard line. On the next play, he threw to Shafi for another touchdown, closing to gap to 30-42. On the following kickoff, YV fumbled the ball and MSJ recovered it on the 50 yard line, regaining possession. Sarwary threw to Shafi again for a 24-yard completion, and on the next play, Sarwary tossed an 18-yard pass to Gao for a touchdown, making the score 37-42 with time running out.

Still down by five points with 19 seconds left in the game, Sarwary completed a 30 yard pass to Yousef Ghanmeh to get MSJ down to Ygnacio’s 20-yard line. Unfortunately, MSJ received two 5-yard penalties to push them back to the 30 yard line with four seconds to go. In hail mary fashion, Sarwary tossed the ball to James Gao in the endzone, but it fell incomplete, sealing the win for YV.

Although MSJ fell just short of the win against YV, they put up a solid fight and played a great game. MSJ Football is expecting a huge turn-around this season, as the new coaching staff, led by head coach Sam Baugh, hopes to embrace their new slogan, “Trust the Process.”


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