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Roundup: Cathedral back on track with tight win over Helix

El Camino's Muriel Eatmon (3) evades Carlsbad's Thomas Weirich (31) during their game at El Camino High on Friday.
(Meg McLaughlin/The San Diego Union-Tribune)

No. 4 Dons beat No. 3 Highlanders in key early season matchup

Reigning Division 1-AA state champion Cathedral Catholic was coming off the worst loss in the program’s storied 64-year history, a 63-7 thrashing by Chandler (Ariz.). The week before, the Dons were drubbed by Corona Centennial 42-7.

Cathedral head coach Sean Doyle pointed out the quality of the competition. Chandler is ranked eighth in the nation, Centennial 15th.

“Chandler might be the best high school team I’ve ever seen,” said Doyle, now in his 27th season coaching Cathedral.

Of his own team, Doyle said, “I feel good about our kids.”

The Dons (2-2), ranked fourth in San Diego, rewarded their head coach’s faith, upsetting the third-ranked Highlanders 14-13 at Jim Arnaiz Field in a non-league game. Helix fell to 3-1.

With 10 new starters on offense, including an entirely new offensive line, Doyle knew his defense would have to carry the team early. That’s exactly what happened against the Scotties.

Helix came in averaging 39 points. The Highlanders scored 13.

Helix QB Ryland Jessee had completed 68 percent of his passes with nine TDs.

But Cathedral’s secondary stayed glued to Helix’s pass catchers as Jessee completed only 10 of 26 passes for 104 yards with no TDs.

Fittingly, the defense sealed the win, Sean Kagen intercepting a pass near midfield with less than 20 seconds to play.

“There was never a doubt in our ability,” said Kagen. “I have full trust in every single dude on our team to do their job.”

Of his defense, Doyle said, “It’s the heart of our team right now.”

Cathedral QB Jack Stevens completed seven of nine passes for 108 yards, one TD and one interception.

Helix’s defense was stout, too, recording three sacks and limiting the Dons to 223 yards.

Top 10 Fared

No. 1 Madison vs. No. 9 Ramona: Late Saturday

No. 2 Carlsbad 20, El Camino 14: Carlsbad (2-1, 1-0) stopped El Camino (2-2, 0-1) at its 23 and 21 on a pair of fourth-quarter defensive stands in the Avocado League opener. LB Thomas Weirich had two sacks and an interception for the Lancers while Ben Harris and Justin Johnson also had interceptions. Johnson caught three passes for 67 yards and a TD. Justus Woods had a key pass breakup in the fourth quarter. Ezekiel Vallez and Ryan Seau had fumble recoveries for El Camino (2-2, 0-1).

No. 4 Cathedral Catholic 14, No. 3 Helix 13

No. 5 Lincoln vs. No. 8 Mater Dei Christian: Late Saturday

No. 6 Poway vs. Torrey Pines: Late Saturday

La Costa Canyon 13, No. 7 Mission Hills 10: A Jack Splavec-to-Andrew Maes TD pass late in the fourth quarter sealed the Avocado League upset for LCC (2-2, 1-0). Maes had 100 yards rushing. Mission Hills (2-2, 0-1) had just three points on offense.

No. 10 Mira Mesa bye

Elsewhere

San Marcos 56, Oceanside 28: San Marcos (3-1, 1-0) opened Avocado League play with freshman QB Kreet Makihele throwing for a school-record seven TDs, covering 21, 35, 36, 41, 50, 66 and 77 yards. Jase Nix had seven catches for 140 yards and three TDs. Nolan Cummings caught five passes for 153 yards and three TDs. Gio Moto and Nate Snakenborg had interceptions. Oceanside (0-4, 0-1) QB Sa’ne Thompson threw for 213 yards and a TD while Joseph Matthews caught nine passes for 90 yards. De’Mariay Vivian returned an interception for a TD and Matthew Gonzales blocked a punt which Ronald Michael recovered for a TD.

Rancho Buena Vista 42, El Capitan 14: RBV (4-0) QB Connor Underhill threw for 211 yards and a pair of TDs. WR Jayden Briscoe had three catches for 109 yards, a TD and a pair of 2-point PATs. Gino Trapasso rushed 19 times for 101 yards, a TD and a 2-point PAT. Jerome Smith recovered a fumble for a TD. Jay Smith had an interception. RBV is 4-0 for the first time since 1993. Jakarrie Bryant had a 24-yard fumble return for a TD for El Capitan (2-2), while Chance LaChappa caught a 25-yard TD pass from Brandt Barker.

San Pasqual 42, Westview 18: Noah Snyder rushed for three TDs for San Pasqual (3-1) and Eli Griffin and another. Manny Adeiza returned a fumble for a TD. Westview got three TD passes from Ryan Herrod, two of which went to Nathan Simpson.

Olympian 48, Valhalla 0: Sophomore Kristian Noriega broke a school record with five TD passes, finishing 13 of 16 for 282 yards for Olympian (2-2). WR Jake Marcial caught five passes for 136 yards and three TDs. Jace Watson led the defense with six tackles, two for a loss, collecting a sack and forcing a fumble. Valhalla is 0-4.

San Ysidro 33, Monte Vista 26: Ja’Marcus Jiles found WR Omar Vargas for a 39-yard TD with 40 seconds remaining as visiting San Ysidro (2-2) evened its record. Jiles finished 10 of 16 for 253 yards and five TDs, three to Johnny Castro. Freshman AJ Logan recorded 23 tackles in addition to rolling up 227 all-purpose yards. Alexander Villanueva raced for a 70-yard score on a pass from Adrian Gonzalez for Monte Vista (1-2). Daniel Renteria carried 28 times for 116 yards for the Monarchs, while Gonzalez rushed for two TDs.

Montgomery 26, El Cajon Valley 12: Isaac Cervantes rushed for 205 yards on 27 carries and a pair of TDs, including a 50-yarder, as Montgomery (3-1) won its third straight game. LB Victor Flores and DE Arath Leyva paced the Aztecs’ defense. El Cajon Valley (1-3) trailed 14-7 at the half but moved even on a 1-yard, off-tackle run by Kal-el Gordon. Paris Dixon had a TD reception for the Braves.

Mission Bay 34, Sweetwater 14: Xavier Crews scored on a 71-yard run but Sweetwater (2-2) had its two-game winning streak snapped. Mission Bay is 4-0.

Fallbrook 37, Santana 12: Fallbrook (3-1) rolled up 296 rushing yards, led by Chris Bausch, who had 26 carries for 203 yards and two TDs and Alan Leon, who had eight carries for 55 yards and a TD. Leon also had a 60-yard kickoff return. Kaleb Collings caught five passes for 45 yards and a score. The defense forced seven three-and-outs. Ramiro Carreno had a 78-yard TD reception for Santana (0-4).

Mt. Carmel 13, Scripps Ranch 9: WR Drew Ventimiglia caught seven passes for 115 yards and a TD for Mt. Carmel (3-1). QB sacks were recorded by Samuel Kennedy, Roman Wiker, Colson Montgomery and Griffin Ramos as the Sundevils defense limited Scripps Ranch (1-3) to 70 yards total offense.

Central Union at Otay Ranch: Weather forced cancellation of the game which goes down as a “no contest.”

Vincent Memorial at Castle Park: The game was cancelled due to weather considerations. Both teams have byes on Oct. 7 and are looking into playing that night.

Crawford 28, Mount Miguel 26: Crawford’s Hamadi Sharif scored on a 10-yard TD run with 52 seconds left in the game. QB Gavin Nguyen completed 11 of 16 passes for 252 yards and three TDs for the Colts, who improved to 2-1. All three touchdowns went to sophomore Tre’von Blanks, who finished with four catches for 156 yards, the TDs covering 85, 40 and 25 yards. Jeremiah Castillo caught a 48-yard TD from Matthew Barton for Mount Miguel (2-2), and Chris Akridge had a 98-yard kickoff return.

Santa Fe Christian 20, Christian 14: Santa Fe Christian’s Jeremy Love and Kevin Olah combined for 200 yards rushing and three TDs, including a 63-yarder by Olah in the fourth quarter. Dane Lee led the SFC (3-1) defense with 12 tackles followed by Charles Sawyer with 10 and Greyson Mundis with nine. Brady Brigham had a 5-yard TD run for Christian (2-2)

Escondido Charter 41, La Jolla Country Day 26: After racing to a 28-0 lead in the first quarter on QB Skylar MacMahon’s four TD passes, Escondido Charter (4-0) clinched the win on Aiden Volk’s interception in the final minutes. Volk also caught three TD passes. La Jolla Country Day (3-1) outscored the White Tigers 26-13 in the final three quarters.

Rancho Bernardo 33, Grossmont 21: Eli Edwards ran 20 times for 141 yards and a TD as well as picking up a sack on defense for Rancho Bernardo (1-3). The Broncos rushed for 230 yards. JT Miller and Joe Gilliam each caught a TD pass. DL Wesley Hoerner had a sack and a fumble recovery. Hudson Herber passed to Shane Hopson for an 81-yard TD for Grossmont (0-4). Herber later found Justin Brown for a 14-yard TD.

Army-Navy 36, Nuevo Nuview Bridge 0: Tonton Drobny had TD runs of 78 and 65 yards for Army-Navy and had a pair of interceptions. Nehemiah Brunson Jr. completed one pass for 34 yards and a TD, rushed seven times for 122 yards and a score and had an interception. Ratumana Bulabalavu and Zavier Leatherman were keys on defense.

Bonita Vista 24, Hilltop 6: Bonita Vista (1-2) got its first win of the season as QB Juan Gomez completed 9 of 14 passes for 140 yards. He tossed TD passes to Remi Soler and Isaiah Chappell. Hilltop (2-2) got a 33-yard TD run from Tyeron Washington.

La Jolla 27, Del Norte 20: La Jolla (3-1) raced to a 21-0 halftime lead behind QB Jackson Diehl, who was 13 for 17 passing for 201 yards and a TD. Justin Scully carried 18 times for 103 yards and two TDs, and Ryan Weinberg, caught eight passes for 153 yards and two TDs. Del Norte (3-1) rallied behind QB Jack Schneider’s 14 for 21 passing for 219 yards and three TDs. Ty Olsen caught 10 passes for 178 yards and all three TDs while Chris Guzman rushed 27 times for 178 yards.

Canyon Hills 33, Chula Vista 12: Canyon Hills (2-2) turned in a big defensive effort in the win. Xander Thoronson intercepted two passes. Andrew Decesare had two sacks. Casey Sanders had nine tackles, five for losses. QB Santino Sgambelluri had 336 yards in total offense, completing 12 of 20 passes for 215 yards and two TDs, plus rushing for 121 yards on nine carries.

Classical Academy 74, Orange Glen 0: Classical Academy (3-1) won the neighborhood rivalry by rushing for 344 yards on 70 carries, led by Life Pollard with six carries for 119 yards and three TDs. Luka Sega rushed for three TDs, plus recovering two fumbles. Thomas Hinrichs had two sacks. Orange Glen fell to 0-4.

Morse 42, Escondido 7: QB Johnny Mosti led Morse (3-1) with a 19 for 32 passing night for 303 yards and three TDs, giving him 1,117 passing yards the season. RB Demarion Wright rushed for two TDs. The Tigers piled up 490 total yards while the defense held Escondido (2-2) to 196 yards.

Point Loma 43, West Hills 14: Chase Lowery rushed for two TDs for Point Loma (3-1). Aaron Lee caught a 60-yard TD pass from Jackson Emerson for the Pointers and kicked three FGs. Collin Dill had a 2-yard rushing TD for West Hills (2-2).

Maranatha Christian 49, Kearny 42: Kearny sophomore QB Brodie Stump completed 32 of 45 passes for 293 yards and two TDs, plus rushed for 85 yards and two scores. Isaiah Sutton had 13 catches for 100 yards for the Komets (3-1). Max Vaughn had his third blocked kicked in two weeks. He also had a strip sack that led to a TD and caught seven passes for 95 yards and a score. Marcus Torres recovered a fumble for a TD. Maranatha is 1-3.

Calexico 42, O’Farrell Charter 0: Zeus Pradis, Leo Canchola, and Andres Castro each scored two rushing TDs for Calexico (4-0) against O’Farrell (0-4).

San Diego 28, Vista 14: Four players scored TDs for San Diego (2-2) in the Cavers’ non-league win. Casey Kotcher-Smith threw for two scores. Vista is 0-4.

St. Augustine 45, Steele Canyon 7: St. Augustine (2-2) freshman QB Brady Palmer had 410 yards in total offense. Palmer threw for 336 yards and rushed for 74, throwing for three TDs and rushing for two. Isaiah Hasten caught four passes for 163 yards and two TDs, plus had an interception. Freshman defensive end Bronx Letuligasenoa had 12 tackles, four tackles for losses and an interception. Steele Canyon is 1-3.

Coronado 27, Mar Vista 13: Steven Davis returned a kickoff 86 yards for a TD for Coronado (3-1). The Islanders rushed for 178 yards, led by Graham Bower (19 carries, 67 yards), who scored twice. Mar Vista is 0-4.

Clairemont 44, San Diego Southwest 25: Clairemont (2-2) returned two kickoffs for TDs. Scott Sullivan brought one back 97 yards and Nick Russell returned one 95 yards. Luke Landerer had two rushing TDs, and Jackson Merrifield intercepted a pass. Southwest is 2-2.

Point Loma 43, West Hills 14: Aaron Lee kicked three field goals and caught a touchdown catch for Point Loma (3-1). West Hills is 2-2.

Granite Hills 38, Eastlake 9: Easton Peterson and backup QB Parlen Sanders led Granite Hills (3-1) to a 14-0 lead in less than five minutes and never looked back, downing host Eastlake (0-4). Peterson took a fumble recovery for a 55-yard score and set up another first-half TD with an interception. Parlan, filling in for starter Nico Tomasello, completed 9 of 12 for 83 yards and a TD. He also added a 19-yard rushing TD. Eastlake got a 1-yard TD from Luke Schwenke but is off to the slowest start in school history (1993).

Palo Verde Valley 56, San Jacinto Valley 8

Brawley 36, Yuma Cibola 0

8-Man Results

Borrego Springs vs. San Pasqual Academy, canceled, weather

Horizon Prep 49, Ocean View Academy 0

Julian vs. Warner, postponed, weather. Rescheduled for Monday

Rancho Cucamonga United Christian 58, Calvin Christian14

Coastal Academy 14, Wildomar California Christian 8

Foothills Christian 29, Los Angeles Sotomayor 8

Rock Academy at Wildomar Cornerstone Christian, Saturday

Saturday Games

Imperial at Valley Center

No. 8 Mater Dei Catholic at No. 5 Lincoln

No. 9 Ramona at No. 1 Madison

Torrey Pines at No. 6 Poway

Mountain Empire vs. Bishop’s

Arrowhead Christian at Tri-City Christian

Norcross is a freelance writer. Staff writer John Maffei and freelance writers Terry Monahan, Steve Brand, Ramon Scott, Adam Paul and Rick Hoff contributed to this report.


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