Scotts Valley High made the trek to Soquel High to kick off last week’s Pacific Coast Athletic League opener.
The Falcons were looking to extend their seven-game win streak in league play but instead were hit with a gut check after a 21-3 loss to the Knights in Mission Division action Sept. 23.
Scotts Valley junior Quinn Turowski said they weren’t prepared to play and didn’t come out fighting, which resulted in long clock-chewing drives by Soquel.
“[Soquel’s] defensive line, they were pushing, defensive backs were doing good,” he added. “It was just those couple of plays that get everyone’s heads down and they don’t get back up.”
Turowski finished with a game-high 116 receiving yards on five receptions, and an interception on the defensive side.
He said they missed out on several opportunities on offense, including three trips to the red zone where the Falcons (4-1, 0-1) converted one field goal in three tries.
“We were on the goal line three times and we didn’t execute once…we should’ve scored,” Turowski said. “We prepared for everything that we saw on film, we just couldn’t execute the way we wanted to.”
Scotts Valley coach Louie Walters said the kids played hard but they just need to get a little better, especially with just five league games remaining.
“We just had a bad game,” he said. “The ball just didn’t bounce our way. The ball bounced toward Soquel. Hats off to them, they were better than us today.”
Sophomore quarterback Lucas Ringel completed 6-of-13 pass attempts for 128 yards for the Falcons. He said they basically came out slow and it all started with an underachieving week of practice.
“I don’t think we were scared, I wasn’t scared,” he said. “It was just another team, but they hit us in the mouth good.”
The Knights’ offense controlled the game from the get-go, starting with a 16-play drive that took up nearly the entire first quarter.
Scotts Valley junior Brady Siechen stalled the drive by intercepting a pass attempt by Soquel senior quarterback Cole Johnson.
Johnson threw two interceptions in the first half but he also finished with a pair of touchdown passes, both to speedy receiver Jordan McCord.
Soquel junior Cruz Ferris had 46 yards rushing and one touchdown to help a run attack that finished with 195 rushing yards, which was also vital to keeping the ball away from Scotts Valley.
“I was surprised that they held the ball for that long, to be honest,” Ringel said. “They’re normally a quick scoring team because they throw deep a lot. But they held that ball for most of the first quarter, which to be honest we’re not moving the ball quick enough.”
Scotts Valley junior running back Nico Iles finished with a team-high 24 yards rushing on six carries and lost a fumble in the opening series of the second half.
Soquel coach Dwight Lowery said he understood that Scotts Valley is a team that likes to run the football, which had to be stopped in order to give them a chance at all.
“I think that we did it consistently enough in order to put us in position to win the game,” Lowery said.
Walters said they simply got beat on both sides of the ball, especially up front where the Knights controlled the line of scrimmage.
“At the end of the day we’re 4-1 and we’ve got two weeks to get better, and we’re in this together,” Walters said.
The Falcons have a bye week before heading into a matchup at Monterey High on Oct. 7 at 7:30pm.
Ringel echoed Turowski by also noticing his teammates got down on themselves after Soquel marched down the field, including on the opening drive of the game.
“We got our spirits back up but that wasn’t enough,” he said.
After starting league play with a loss, Turowski said they’ll need to show up to practice looking at the situation in a different way and not take any reps off.
Ringel mentioned they’ll take the extra time during the bye week to get ready for Monterey and hopes they’ll be able to bounce back.
“Monterey’s not an easy team, either,” he said. “But fortunately we have this bye so we can start from the basics, to be honest.”
Scotts Valley at Monterey
When: Oct. 7, 7:30pm