Menlo News November 18, 2023

CCS: Football loses a heartbreaker in semis

Menlo falls to Christopher

Menlo's Kyle Mahaffey tackles Christopher quarterback Jaxen Robinson in the second half of Saturday's game.

11.18,2023 – Making its second appearance in a Div. II semifinal in three seasons, the Menlo football team dropped a heart-breaking 21-17 loss to Christopher at home Saturday.
The Knights wrap up the season with a 10-2 record after going 5-0 in league to win the Peninsula Athletic League DeAnza Championship. In 2021, the Knights advanced to the CCS Div. II championship
After kickoff, Menlo stopped Christopher at the Knights’ 21. The Knights marched their way to the 2 after rushes by Mikey McGrath and Willis Johnson, and a 13-yard catch by Luke Rogers from McGrath. McGrath followed his blockers into the end zone and Andre Gonzalez Lombera converted the PAT for a 7-0 lead with 1:30 left in the first.
In the second quarter, Menlo’s Bradford Tudor delivered a sack for a loss on fourth down. Menlo got the ball back and passes to Nicky Scacco and Brady Jung helped the Knights move the ball 60 yards in nine plays, culminating in a 28-yard Gonzalez Lombera field goal and a 10-0 with 2:05 left in the half.
McGrath completed 14 of 25 for 248 yards and had 16 rushes for 67 yards and two toiuchdowns. Jung finished with six receptions for 109 yards. 
Midway through the third quarter, juniors Brett Frauenhofer knocked the ball lose, and Tyler Fernandez recoverd a fumble on punt, and the Knights capitalize when McGrath runs untouched to the right side of the end zone. McGrath’s 13-yard pass to Jung helped set up the play.
Christopher responded with its first score of the day: Amari Bluford reeled in a 79-yard pass from Jaxen Robinson and the Cougars trailed 17-7 with 4:20 left third quarter. The Cougars scored twice more with Robinson’s 35-yard run for a TD giving Christopher the edge.
The Cougars (11-1) will face Soquel in the Div. II final Saturday after staging a fourth-quarter comeback to turn the tables.