Portola High School football left Tiger tracks all over the newly renamed Brennan football stadium field at Feather River College March 19 as PHS won 45-0 facing long-time rivals, the Quincy Trojans.
Portola kept the scoreboard moving with touchdowns in each quarter. Senior Shane Curren scored a 25-yard TD in the first quarter. The extra point kick failed, 6-0. Senior Zach Mulhall brought an 11-yard TD in the second quarter. The 2-point conversion failed, 12-0. Curren completed a 38-yard run to score and the kick failed bringing the score to 18-0 at the half.
In the third quarter, Mulhall was very busy and very successful. He scored with a 10-yard run, the conversion pass failed, 24-0. Then Mulhall again carried for an 11-yard run to score and with a good kick from Curren the Tigers stood leading 31-0. That wasn’t enough, Mulhall carried a third time in the quarter into the end zone on a 14-yard run, another good kick from Curren put the score at 38-0. Senior James Sampson jumped on the scoreboard with a dramatic catch of a 48-yard pass from senior quarterback Dylan Gonsalves, with another good kick from Curren the score landed at its final resting place, 45-0, Tigers over Trojans.
PHS senior quarterback Dylan Gonsalves played more of a passing game this week facing the Trojans than in last weeks victory over the Loyalton Grizzlies (39-0) but the outcome was the same, not a single point landed on the scoreboard for Tiger opposition. Gonsalves had seven completions of 15 attempts for 123 yards and an average of 17.6 yards. Gonsalves only carried the ball twice for a total of 2 yards. Curren had the most carries, 11, for 206 yards and an average of 18.7, scoring two touchdowns. Mulhall had 10 carries, 83 yards scoring a whopping four TDs. Senior Diogo Juarez made three carries for 47 yards. Sophomore Steven Peralta had a single carry for 16 yards.
Portola senior Owen Bowling picked up 51 yards receiving, Sampson 53 yards, and Mulhall 19. Junior Michael Stewart made a punt return for 11 yards and Sampson brought a return 8 yards. Curren made a kick return of 6 yards and made two interceptions.
“I thought we did a lot of good things on both sides of the ball Friday night,” said Portola head football coach Steve Heskett. “I think our tackling could have been better and we will fix that.” The Tigers defense was led by senior Carver Wearin with 9 total tackles, Bowling had 8, Curren and senior Xander Loomis both made 6, Juarez and junior Miles Silva landed 5 each.
Portola Tiger players are seniors Dylan Gonsalves, Owen Bowling, Shane Curren, Diogo Juarez, Xavier Avila, Zach Mulhall, James Sampson, Carver Wearin, Xander Loomis, and Rafa Silva. Juniors on the team are: Cade Wilmer, Devin Morrison, Michael Stewart, Sage Adam, Lucas Hellbig, Gabriel Ismerio, Miles Silva, Andrew Maddelena, Jackson Powell, and Donny Peralta. Steven Peralta is the only sophomore on the PHS team.
The Trojan varsity football players are Juniors Eli Allred, David Leonhardt, Hank Taylor, and Jacob McAllister. Sophomore players are Daniel Mercer, Nathan Friden, Garrison Dyrr, Aidan Powers, Gabe Schmalz, Drew Dodson, Hayden Brawley, Fin Olson, Dominic Daun, Isaiah Richmond, and Nathan Rice. QHS freshmen players are Zack Schmalz, Cal Hawkins, Ryan Swan, Brody Nunez, Ryan James, and Jesse Williams. Undisclosed ages are Nathan Kingston, Ian Robinson, and Christopher Driscoll.
The Quincy team is young in comparison to the seasoned Portola Tigers loaded with senior and junior players, but the Trojans fought hard and nearly scored in the last minutes of the game.
“Hats off to Quincy,” said Heskett. “It’s a very young team and they played hard. I’m glad they are getting the program going in the right direction.” The clock kept running after the Sampson TD in the fourth quarter since the spread was greater than 40 points and the Tiger second squad came on the field.
“Portola only had two possessions in the game where they did not score,” said announcer Ron Trumbo covering the game on 95.9 fm. The evenings contest was the first game for the Trojans and the second for Portola. The game took place on the eve of the first day of spring but the weather felt like October.
PHS Defensive coach Bubba Saenz had shouted to the Portola defense on the first play after the kickoff, “Introduce yourselves!” Mission accomplished.