Las Lomas 35, Acalanes 13
The Stars: Las Lomas’ Robby Ow was sensational on both sides of the ball. He intercepted a first quarter pass that led to a Knights score. He later rocked a wide receiver with a bone-jarring hit that caused a fumble, which he recovered. Ow also added eight receptions for 80 yards and a four-yard touchdown grab.
The Turning Point: Las Lomas appeared to be in full control of the contest after a Jake Villa eight-yard touchdown run put them up 21-7 to start the third quarter. However, Acalanes battled back with a long twelve-play drive, capped off by a nine-yard scamper by Carson Gardner to pull the Dons within 8. Acalanes would not get any closer, as the Knights added two late fourth quarter scores while shutting out the Dons in the final quarter.
The Quote: "Robby (Ow) stepped up big. I was unhappy with him during the week and made a comment to him and he played his tail off tonight. I was real proud of him. I was real proud of all the guys tonight." — Las Lomas coach Doug Longero.
What's Next? Las Lomas will advance to the North Coast Section Division II playoffs, while Acalanes season is over as they failed to qualify for the post season.
leaned on a bruising running attack led by thumper Jake Villa most of the year, but Thursday night in Lafayette, forced the Knights to beat them through the air.
“I knew they were going to be prepared. (Acalanes’ coach) Mike (Ivankovich) does a great job against the run and I am really good friends with Mike,” said Longero. “I wanted to take my shots through the air and loosen them up and take our shots on the ground after that. We got the win. It was a great team win.”
Las Lomas quarterback Adam Wood found his speedster Robby Ow time and time again, leading the Knights to a 35-13 victory over the Dons on their senior night.
The loss stung a senior laden Acalanes squad as it eliminated them from playoff contention. Many of their players left the team's post game huddle visibly shaken to tears as reality set in that most would never play another down of football.
“We are a good team. We played everybody tough,” said Coach Ivankovich. “We lost three games by sevens points in the last minute. It is really disappointing because we are done, we did not qualify for the playoffs. I know a lot of people say this, but we are better than a lot of teams that are going to qualify. But you have to qualify.”
On the other side of the field, Las Lomas celebrated a victory that boosted their team up the ranks for the NCS playoffs.
“We should not be lower than a 3-seed in the playoffs, we should be the 2-seed at 8-2 with our body of work,” said Longero. “I am just looking forward to playing next week and playing a game in the playoffs. I think we can make a run.”
The win was an important bounce back after taking a loss last Friday at the hands of the DFAL champs, Campolindo.
Wood was uber efficient completing 16-of-18 passes for 137 yards and two touchdowns, while Ow hauled in eight catches for 80 yards and a score.
“We came out and wanted to pass the ball a lot and we knew we could,” said Ow. “We picked our spots and (made plays). This was good especially after last week’s loss, to come back and beat a good team. This gives us a good push into the playoffs.”
The Las Lomas defense was disciplined against the Dons tricky double wing offense with two and three running backs flanking quarterback Spencer Henderson.
Henderson led Acalanes with 87 rushing yards, followed by Joseph Dreyer, who ground out 63.
The Knights swarmed the Dons ball carriers, limiting them to only 212 yards of total offense and only 13 points.
Las Lomas’ physical runner Villa added to his 1,000-yard season with 74 more rushing yards and two touchdowns, while versatile teammate Ardell Romez tallied 52 yards on the ground.
Wood also showed well on defense, recording a sack on the Dons’ elusive signal caller.
Las Lomas coaches and players will be sitting close to the phones and computers Sunday at 1 p.m., waiting for the NCS to release the playoff brackets and determine their opponent and seeding.
Notes: Las Lomas tight end Brayton Milner continues to come into his own. He dominated the middle of the field, catching four balls for 55 yards. Las Lomas fans should prepare for a Friday evening playoff game.
Las Lomas 35, Acalanes 13
Las Lomas 7 7 7 14 — 35
Acalanes 0 7 6 0 — 13
7:25, 1st: LL — Villa 4 run (Howard kick)
10:37, 2nd: LL — Carson 7 pass Wood (Howard kick)
0:00, 2nd: A — Newman 1 run (Nork kick)
9:48, 3rd: LL— Villa 8 run (Howard kick)
3:15, 3rd: A — Gardner 9 run (kick blocked)
4:11, 4th: LL — Owe 4 pass Wood (Howard kick)
1:02, 4th: LL — Hill 4 run (Howard Kick)
Records: Las Lomas 8-2 (4-2). Acalanes 4-6 (2-4)