Game of the Week: El Capitan 24, Helix 17

The stakes could not have been higher – keeping a perfect record intact, winning a league championship, and solidifying your positioning for the upcoming playoffs.  And in case the pressure wasn’t high enough, have it all take place in front of a rowdy Senior Night crowd.

El Capitan checked each one of those boxes on Friday night.

Silver Pigskin watch list candidate Brad Cagle threw two touchdown passes, including one to his brother, and Isaiah Capoocia had a critical fourth-quarter interception as the Vaqueros (10-0) clinched the Grossmont Hills League championship with a 24-17 upset victory over the Helix Highlanders (8-2).  It was the most points Helix had given up all season.

The first quarter started off anything but positive for host El Capitan, who found themselves down 14-0 after the first 12 minutes thanks to touchdown runs by Jihad Woods and Nathan Stinson.  But the Vaquero offense would calm down and, thanks to reliable running from DJ Smith and Capoocia, allow Cagle to hook up with Sam Melero from 23 yards out for their first score.  Cagle’s second touchdown would be a family affair, as he found his twin brother Zach for a 10-yard catch that tied the game at 14.  A Matthias Layton field goal would reclaim the 17-14 lead for the Scotties right before the half, but it would be the last points the Highlanders would score in this game.

El Cap would save the rest of their dramatics for the fourth quarter.  Joey Lachappa’s leaping 28-yard catch on the near sideline kept a Vaquero drive alive, and allowed Smith to rumble in for a 3-yard touchdown and a 24-17 El Cap lead.  The teams would trade possessions before Helix quarterback made his only mistake of the game, rolling out of the pocket to his right and throwing an interception to a diving Capoocia.  Thankfully for the visitors, the turnover would not yield any points, and the Scotties would have one last chance to tie the game at the end.  Sadly, Austin would be forced out of bounds on a fourth and long scramble that ended well short of the sticks.  After a single Brad Cagle kneel down, the celebration was underway at El Cap.

They’ll remember this one for quite a while.

Categories: PPR Week 11