CIF state football: Milpitas can finally shout ‘We’re No. 1!’

EL CENTRO – Milpitas drove 54 yards late in the fourth quarter to post a come-from-behind 45-41 win over Southwest-El Centro in the CIF State 4-A championship game Saturday night.

It was the first state football championship in school history for the Trojans.

“We played a great team and they came back hard on us but in the end we made the plays,” said Milpitas coach Kelly King.

The game started slowly for the Trojans as Southwest deferred and kicked off to the visitors.

Milpitas drove but ultimately punted, and Tyler Saikhon caught a 69-yard pass for a touchdown and 7-0 lead.

The Trojans answered on their next play from scrimmage with a 70 yard touchdown run by Tariq Bracy.

Southwest went back on top 14-7, but Bracy scored again to make it 14-14.

Senior kicker Mariano Robles then hit a 20-yard field goal and Milpitas was ahead 17-14. It was the first of three field goals byb Robles, who also connected from 27 and 37 yards.

“I knew I was going to play a big part in this game,” Robles said. “I came into the game thinking that if it came down to making a kick to win I could do it.”

Milpitas then took a 24-14 lead into halftime as Tyree Bracy found brother Tariq on a 35-yard pass play.

With Tariq Bracy rushing for 161 first-half yards on 12 carries and with the Milpitas defense having held Southwest’s Saikhon to just four yards, things looked good for the Trojans.

Things looked even better for the Trojans when senior defensive captain Gabriel Erickson intercepted a pass that Robles converted into three points and a 27-14 lead.

“I watched film and so I keyed on the fullback and saw him creeping out and the linemen moving forward and I figured screen and made a play on the ball,” Erickson said.

And it …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Sports

Saturday Night Five: Royce Freeman shows up, Oregon doesn’t; the Ducks’ alternate search; and those must-keep ASU coordinators


Five instant reactions to Pac-12 football developments …

1. Silly me. I thought the conference’s postseason began Dec. 16, with Oregon in the Las Vegas Bowl.

Turns out, the Ducks weren’t in the LVB. They no-showed …

Oh, goodness.

Oregon had better hope this wasn’t a peek into next season.

The Pac-12 had better hope it wasn’t a peek into next week.

A forgettable regular season for the conference got off to an epic fail of a postseason start.

The Ducks lost to Boise State by 10 points only because of an 86-yard fumble return and a 100-yard interception return.

In reality, they were beaten by many, many touchdowns.

The performance, frankly, was an embarrassment.

I thought they would be ready to play, despite the turmoil of Willie Taggart’s departure and the brief coaching search and Mario Cristobal’s promotion.

I thought they would be ready to play because Justin Herbert was under center their offensive line would control scrimmage — and because Boise State was barely the best team in mighty mediocre Mountain West.

But the Broncos were oozing urgency and well prepared.

The Ducks were the opposite, in every regard.

2. I was surprised to see Royce Freeman on the sideline and did a double-take when I saw him engaged with the players.

If Freeman doesn’t want to play, fine. But why in the world is a player who willingly removed himself from the team then rallying the team?

When Christian McCaffrey opted out of Stanford’s bowl game to focus on draft preparation (i.e., avoid injury), he did not accompany the Cardinal to the Sun Bowl.

He was done playing, so he was done participating.

I realize the Oregon players supported Freeman’s presence on the sideline, but the head coach has to save the players from themselves — Cristobal should have stepped in and told Freeman to stay away.

Granted, Freeman’s presence was hardly the root cause of …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Sports

Should Erik Johnson be suspended for nasty play on Namestnikov?

Colorado Avalanche defenceman Erik Johnson could be facing supplemental discipline for a nasty play he made on Tampa Bay Lightning forward Vladislav Namestnikov Saturday night.

Late in the second period of what ended up being a 6-5 Lightning victory, Johnson cross-checked Namestnikov who fell hard into the boards behind the Colorado net.

Johnson received a slashing minor, boarding major and a game misconduct for the play. Namestnikov was able to return to the game the following period.

[brightcove videoID=5684448547001 playerID=2540680026001 height=360 width=100% autostart=false]

The Lightning lost Ryan Callahan earlier this week after the forward crashed into the boards in a game against the Coyotes.

Namestnikov has 13 goals and 15 assists in 32 games this season playing on a line with Steven Stamkos and Nikita Kucherov.

[relatedlinks] …read more


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