Week 6 State Farm Game of the Week: West Hills Wolf Pack 24, El Capitan Vaqueros 14
The second annual battle for the Tony Burner Memorial Trophy between West Hills and El Capitan was full of drama in the final eight minutes and the Wolf Pack ultimately sealed a 24-14 victory.
The Vaqueros took nearly half of the opening quarter to drive 80 yards and capped it off with a Wick Hauser 2-yard touchdown run giving El Cap a 7-0 lead.
West Hills came back to tie the game when Kole Klingerman ran down the right sideline on a fake punt to gain 30 yards keeping the drive alive. On the next play, Klingerman ran on an end-around to the left the pulled up and threw a pass to his brother, Kip Klingerman, for a 17-yard touchdown pass to make it 7-all.
The Wolf Pack took their first lead of the game midway through the third quarter on an Elijah Mullett 31-yard field goal making it 10-7 West Hills.
Hauser struck again on a 1-yard scramble to eventually score a touchdown and a 14-10 lead for the Vaqueros.
With 4:35 left in the game ,El Capitan linebacker Jacobo Villa sacked Gerardo Hernandez setting up a fourth down from the Vaquero 23-yard line.
Wolf Pack head coach Casey Ash decided to go for it and Hernandez threw a pass to the left corner of the back of the end zone and Kole Klingerman caught it while dragging his foot in-bounds for the go-ahead score.
With El Capitan down 17-14, Hauser drove his team down to the West Hills 14-yard line with a little bit over a minute left to play. However, his pass to the end zone was intercepted by Steven Cristini at the goal line and he took it the other way 100 yards for the game-sealing touchdown.
The Wolf Pack improved to 3-2 and will open Grossmont Valley League play next week at home against El Cajon Valley. El Capitan fell to 0-5 and heads to Helix to start Grossmont Hills League play next week.
Throw the records out the window this week when the El Capitan Vaqueros (0-4) host the West Hills Wolf Pack (2-2) in the State Farm Game of the Week. It is a rivalry that dates to 2005 when head coach Ron Burner left West Hills to take over at El Capitan but has taken on greater significance with last season’s first-annual battle for the Tony Burner Memorial Trophy.
El Capitan won last season against West Hills. It was an emotional victory for Coach Burner whose son, Tony, died peacefully in his sleep in June 2017. He and West Hills head coach Casey Ash agreed to establish the Tony Burner Memorial Trophy and coach Burner has also established a scholarship which will be awarded to a player from each team, who will be majoring in business in college. He says that his goal is to eventually establish a scholarship fund for a player for each team in the Grossmont Hills League, as well as, the Grossmont Valley League.
Tony was a record-breaking quarterback at West Hills as well as a great baseball player before coaching for his father at El Cap. Ron still gets emotional thinking about how his team rose to the occasion to win that game for him last season.
The Vaqueros are 0-4 despite averaging 40 points per game over the last three weeks. Last week, they lost a shootout with Patrick Henry, 60-52. The offense is led by senior quarterback Wick Hauser, who is a fourth-year starter with plenty of weapons around him.
At West Hills, the quarterback reps are split evenly between senior Gerardo Hernandez and sophomore Braden Oberg. They have combined for six touchdown passes and 0 interceptions. Senior wide receiver Kole Klingerman has four touchdown receptions to lead the team. Senior running back Jake Maheu leads the ground game with 261 yards and four touchdowns.
For highlights of this game tune into “1st & 15” on KUSI at 10:45 p.m. For updates on this game and the rest of the action around the county follow us on Twitter @RedJacketArmy.