The good news for the Serra football team Saturday night was it tripled the points Valley Christian had allowed this season.
Nathan Mollat / Daily Journal
Serra's Mark Timko avoids a tackle and turns up field for a 16-yard gain during the Padres' 52-23 loss to Valley Christian Saturday night in San Jose.
Coming into the West Catholic Athletic League opener for both squads, the Warriors had given up all of one touchdown in three games. Saturday night, Serra scored 23 points.
Unfortunately, Valley Christian more than doubled up the Padres. The Warriors displayed all the wares that have them ranked as one of the top teams in the state. They dominated in all facets of the game, drubbing the Padres 52-23.
"I didn’t have these guys ready to play,” said Serra coach Patrick Walsh. "This loss is on me, big time.”
Walsh may blame himself, but the bottom line is the Padres were going up against one of the top players and top teams in the Central Coast Section – if not the state. Valley Christian’s Byron Marshall was a one-man wrecking crew. Marshall rushed for 128 yards and two touchdowns, while also returning two punts for two more scores – a 63-yard return in the second quarter and a 71-yard score in the fourth.
"I think Byron Marshall is one of the finer players (in CCS),” Walsh said. "We couldn’t tackle him any phase of the game.”
Marshall had 128 yards on 11 carries in the first half alone.
Walsh said he would have to watch the game tape to see if he defense played that poorly, but he admitted Marshall made his team look bad.
"It was probably Byron making us miss (tackles),” Walsh said. "It was an amazing performance.”
Marshall’s performance was, in and of itself, enough to beat Serra (0-1 WCAL, 2-2 overall). But when you factor in the play of Valley Christian quarterback Zach Vaiana and receiver Brian Fobbs, as well as the Warriors defense, it all added up to a long night for the Padres. Vaiana completed 9 of 10 passes for 128 yards and a score. Fobbs had seven of those catches for 118 yards and the touchdown.
Defensively, Valley’s Joseph Jahn scooped up a fumble and went 25 yards for a score to put the Warriors up 14-0 less than halfway through the first quarter. The Warriors had just driven 80 yards on the opening possession and the Padres, on their first possession, fumbled the ball away on just their third play.
Not that it would have mattered much.
"We would have lost by less (without the fumble return),” Walsh said.
Serra had its chances to get back in the game. Following the fumble return, the Padres started their second drive at their own 20. They marched down the field, but on first down from the Valley Christian 11, running back Erich Wilson took a direct snap but couldn’t handle it. He ended up taking a 15-yard loss that killed the drive. Two plays later, Parker Toms came on and booted a 36-yard field goal and the Padres trailed 14-3 heading into the second quarter.
That would be the only drive Serra could sustain in the first half, as the Padres went into halftime trailing 31-3.
In the second half, the Padres did a better job moving the ball, but the defense still struggled to contain the Valley Christian (1-0, 4-0) offense. Wilson was the lone bright spot for the Padres, as he rushed for 175 yards and two touchdowns on 17 carries. He electrified the crowd with a 69-yard run from his 20 down to the Warriors’ 11 on the second play of the third quarter and late in the fourth, he turned what was nearly a sack on Andy McAlindon into a 46-yard score. Surrounded by Valley Christian defenders, McAlindon flipped the ball to Wilson, who ran toward the left sideline, turneds the corner and motored into the end zone.
Fullback Alex Bravo also had a decent game, averaging four yards a carry as he rushed for 44 yards and a touchdown on 11 carries. That was about it for the Padres, who rushed for 241 yards but managed only 273 yards of total offense.
"From what I’ve seen, everyone is chasing Valley,” Walsh said. "This could be one of [Valley coach Mike Machado’s] best teams of all time.”
Valley Christian 52, Serra 23
Serra 3 0 14 6 – 23
Valley Christian 14 17 7 14 – 52
VC -- Marshall 5 run (P. Ramirez kick)
VC -- Jahn 25 fumble return (P. Ramirez kick)
S – Toms 36 field goal
VC – P. Ramirez 35 field goal
VC – Marshall 63 punt return (P. Ramirez kick)
VC – Marshall 22 run (P. Ramirez kick)
S – Wilson 6 run (Toms kick)
VC – Jones 7 run (P. Ramirez kick)
VC – Fobbs 27 pass from Vaiana (P. Ramirez kick)
VC – Marshall 71 punt return (P. Ramirez kick)
S – Wilson 46 run (run fail)
RUSHING (carries-yards): SERRA – Wilson 17-175, Bravo 11-44, Timko 1-16, McAlindon 5-8, Erdle 1-2, Tuitavake 1-(-4). Totals 36-241. VALLEY CHRISTIAN – Marshall 15-128, Jones 9-56, Lawson 6-55, Sacci 3-10, J. Martinez 2-3, Saldivar 1-2, Vaiana 3-(-4). Totals 39-250.
PASSING (comp-att-yards-td-int): SERRA – McAlindon 3-9-32-0-0, Falk 0-1-0-0-0. Totals 3-10-32-0-0. VALLEY CHRISTIAN – Vaiana 9-10-128-1-0.
RECEIVING (catches-yards): SERRA – Wilson 1-21, Bravo 2-11. Totals 3-32. VALLEY CHRISTIAN – Fobbs 7-118, Marshall 2-10. Totals 9-128.
TOTAL OFFENSE (rush-pass-total): SERRA – 241-32-273. VALLEY CHRISTIAN – 250-128-378.