Will Tutor was doing his thing two weeks ago on the junior varsity team when Del Campo varsity coach Aaron Goldfried told him he wanted him to come up to play with the big boys.
Great call, Coach.
Tutor booted home a 21-yard field goal with no time remaining Friday night to beat Christian Brothers 30-28 at Hughes Stadium, spoiling the No. 20 Falcons’ homecoming.
“I saw him kicking into the end zones during JV practice, plus he’s a quarterback, so I brought him up,” Goldfried said.
Tutor had his extra-point attempt blocked midway through the fourth quarter, and Christian Brothers marched down the field to take a 28-27 lead on a 6-yard pass from Jacob Stewart to Chace Gallup.
But running back Levi Markey and his Cougars teammates drove down the field and gave Tutor a chance to win the game on a 35-yard field goal attempt. His kick sailed wide left but the Falcons were called for roughing the kicker and the ball was spotted on the Falcons’ 14.
“He got cleaned up,” Goldfried said. “I don’t think he flopped at all. I don’t think the kid knows how to flop.”
“All I saw on the first kick was a guy off to my left and then I got hit,” Tutor said. “Man, that next one was so much easier.”
A major brawl broke out midfield soon after the ball sailed through the uprights. Coaches were throwing blows, both benches emptied and players started swinging. Midfield looked like a mosh pit at a heavy metal concert. The brawl lasted for at least 30 seconds, and the pushing and shoving lasted for several minutes more until security guards restored the peace.
Markey had 282 yards on 33 carries and four rushing touchdowns of 6, 4, 41 and 2 yards. He had runs of 54 and 45 in the fourth quarter and his 2-yard score stopped 21 unanswered points from CBS.
“I was feeling those in the fourth quarter,” Markey said.
“The guy is a freak,” said Goldfried of Markey. “He’s so good, he could be a complete jerk if he wanted to. But he’s not. The guys love him.”
What’s not to love about a kid puts together a punishing running style one play and then race past you the next? And you have to love an athlete who played rugby last winter instead of wrestling, yet still showed up at meets and finished seventh in the 285-pound weight class at the California Interscholastic Federation State Wrestling Meet.
“He can go outside, between the tackles and move the pile,” Goldfried said. “Our style has been to go straight ahead. It’s what he does and what we do well.”
Christian Brothers head coach Tyler Almond said his team prepared to contain Markey, although the team didn’t do too much to change up their scheme. He said his squad has played well this season against teams that like to “ground-and-pound,” as he put it.
“We stick to what we do,” Almond said. “Obviously, he’s a really good player. We showed our kids that he’s a bigger back, runs hard and we have to hit the right gap to get him. We’ve been working all week on tackling and trying to make him run to the sideline is beneficial for us. The kid at Capital Christian (D’Marcus Ross) is similar in size and strength, so we’ve seen his type.”
The loss snapped a Falcons’ three-game winning streak, dropping them to 5-4 overall and 3-2 in the Capital Athletic League. Sophomore quarterback Jacob Stewart connected with junior wide receiver Luke Jones on a 20-yard pass for a third-quarter score and on 46- and 31-yarders to Tyler Green.
“We have a young team and it’s been nice to see them mature, especially in some of these tight games and figures some things out,” Almond said. “We’ve gotten better each week and hopefully we’ll keep that momentum. Luke Jones has had a great season for us. Tyler Green is our workhorse and we have six sophomores starting, and they’ve all progressed really well this season, including our quarterback Jacob Stewart.”
Goldfried, who was co-coach and defensive coordinator, took over Del Campo’s program after longtime head coach Mike Dimino stepped down because of health issues. Since then the Cougars are 3-1 and have an outside shot at the Sac-Joaquin Section playoffs if they beat winless Bella Vista next week. Teams have to have a minimum of four wins to be considered for an at-large playoff berth.
Dimino coached Goldfield at El Camino High. Goldfried was a Bee All-Metro defensive lineman who later played at Sonoma State. He joined Dimino at Del Campo in 2008 after spending five seasons with Max Miller at Cordova where he was the defensive coordinator in 2007.
“We’re all real close, a real tight staff,” Goldfried said of the coaching change, adding that Dimino left the team in good hands. “So, I knew we’d be fine as a staff. We were 0-5 (when Dimino stepped down) and we lost some kids. But we circled the wagons and the kids have responded. It could have been really bad. It could have been a nightmare.
“We may just sneak in,” Goldfried said. “Wouldn’t that be something?”