For yours truly life got in the way in a big time way this weekend.   For the first time since I have been writing for I didn’t attend or update a high school football game.
Because of that, the rankings will serve as an overview version of the weekend in local football.
It is in the back of the mind of every parent and fan mind when attending a football game.
You’re attending the game and enjoying it with family and friends and then the moment happens.   The game stops and as time goes on the injury is obviously not your run of the mill injury.
That happened, in what turned out to be the best high school game of the week.   Vanden defeated Rancho Cotate 33-28 in what most nights we would be talking about what a thrilling high school football game it was.
Instead the concern was for Rancho Cotate quarterback Gunner Mefferd, who was injured in the third quarter.  The game came to a halt for quite someday as Mefferd was taken care of.   He was placed on a stretcher and taken away in an ambulance.
Fortunately, for how bad the scene looked, the news is good. Mefferd is home and hoping to play this week, although you would call him doubtful.
As bad as it looked as it was happening, it is a big sigh of relief all around.
No. 1 Analy (2-0) (Last Week No. 1)…Had the week off.  Could make a strong case they are playing for a No. 1 seed in the NCS Division 3 playoffs the next two weeks with trips to Montgomery and McClymonds of Oakland.
No. 2 Windsor (3-0) (2)… Windsor is 3-0 for the first time since the 2011 undefeated championship after going on the road and having an impressive second half in a 49-27 win over Defending NCS Division 2 champions Miramonte.
Windsor put on a dominating second half after trailing 20-14 at the half.
Jalen Roman had another game of over 100 yards passing and rushing while throwing three touchdown passes.
Windsor got scores from all angles.  They scored one touchdown on a 17 yard interception return by Sam Fletcher and scored another one when Mitchell Bruning recovered a blocked punt in the end zone.   That was the first score of the second half and gave Windsor the lead for good.   It was one of four touchdowns for Bruning, who caught all three of Roman’s touchdown passes.
Miramonte is 0-3 on the season.  The combined record of the teams that have defeated them is 8-1.
No. 3 Cardinal Newman (1-2) (3)…Not going to punish Cardinal Newman for this loss.  Clayton Valley Charter showed everything that has been its headlines during the past few months in a  42-21 win.   One of them is they are a pretty good football team.   Two they have issues.
Running back Miles Harrison was held out in the first half because of missing classes during the week.  In the second half he rushed for a team high 108 yards and had a forty yard score which was the last one of the game.
The game turner was early in the third quarter when Elijah Breon returned an interception 58 yards to break a 14-14 tie.
Cardinal Newman sophomore quarterback Jordon Brookshire threw for 111 yards and a touchdown.   He was also the game’s leading rusher with 140 yards and two scores.  Craig Lucey also rushed for 100 yards, part of a 250 yard rushing game for the Cardinals.
In the end five turnovers stopped Cardinal Newman’s chances of pulling off a big upset.
No. 4 Rancho Cotate (0-2) (4)…No punishment here either, in a tough loss to a good Vanden team.  They made another case that they are the most exciting team to watch.  They rallied from a 27-14 deficit to take the lead before dropping a 33-28 decision.  Vanden scored on a blocked punt one play after the delay, because of the injury to Mefford to take the 27-14 lead.  Cooper Nicks came in to lead two touchdown drives to give them the lead with six minutes left.   Vanden scored the game winner with four minutes left. Rancho Cotate then drove into Vanden territory in the last minute but fell short.
No. 5 Maria Carrillo (2-1) (5)…The defense led them to a 15-13 win over Benicia.  Benicia scored on its first drive and was stopped until the fourth quarter.  Then they stopped a two point conversion to preserve the win.  After the opening touchdown, Josh Groesbeck returned the ensuing kickoff 84 yards for a touchdown.   Walker Rotherham threw a touchdown pass and Connor Eastwick kicked a 23 yard field goal early in the fourth quarter to make it 15-7.  That turned out to be the game winner.  Alex Netherda rushed for 120 yards to lead the Puma offense.
No. 6 Montgomery (1-1) (8)…The defense shined in what was a huge win for the Vikings.  The defense didn’t give up anything in the 18-7 win over Dublin.  A pick six gave Dublin the early lead.   Charles Stone rushed for two scores, the last one a fifteen yard run in the 4th quarter to wrap up the scoring.
No. 7 St. Helena (2-0) (7)…For the second straight week the Saints were behind at the half. For the second straight week they got a win.   This was more offensive than the opening week 13-10 win over Healdsburg.  This was a 33-20 win over Winters in theie home opener which was their first game on their new field that has the fake grass.   It took a while for both teams to get the offense going.  St. Helena kicked a field goal in the last minute of the first half to make it a 7-3 Winters halftime lead.   In the second half the offense took over.   Quarterback Jack Preston had over 300 yards in total offense, rushing for two scores and passing for another.  Both of his rushing touchdowns came in a wild fourth quarter in which each team scored two touchdowns. The difference in the game was a 17-0 third quarter in which Preston threw his touchdown pass.   St. Helena had over 400 yards in total offense.
No. 8 Fort Bragg (2-1) (NR)…The Timberwolves could give Rancho Cotate a run for their money as the most exciting team in the area.  Junior quarterback Kaylor Sullivan passed for 446 yards and four touchdowns in a 35-19 win over El Molino.  Lucas Triplett caught ten passes for 165 yards and three of the touchdowns.  Sullivan has already passed for over 1,200 yards and thrown 14 touchdown passes.  Triplett has caught five of the touchdown passes and is averaging 120 yards receiving a game.  The 35 points was the lowest scoring total they have scored this season.  That was a 46-36 loss to McKinleyville.
No. 9 Petaluma (2-1) (NR)…A big second half led the Trojans to a 35-15 win over Terra Linda.  Brendon White and Harrison Royal teamed up for two touchdowns and Yuseph Kawasmi rushed for two more.   It was Petaluma’s biggest offensive output of the season.
No. 10 Middletown (1-1) (NR)…Bounced back from the opening season loss to their nemesis Salesian with a 12-0 win over Healdsburg.  It was all defense for Middletown, including its first touchdown with was a pick six from 43 yards for Antonie Guzman.  He was used to catching the ball.  He had all of Middletown’s receiving yards with nine catches for 138 yards.  The other touchdown was run in by Wyatt Hall who rushed for 72 yards on 13 carries.
HONORABLE MENTION…Cloverdale, Clear Lake, El Molino
PLAYER OF THE WEEK…Kaylor Sullivan, Fort Bragg…Maybe we are going to have to put him on a sliding scale.   He is here for the second straight week.  How can you ignore a 446 yard passing game and four touchdowns as they defeated El Molino 35-19.
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