As soon as fans entered the home gate for Friday night’s Grossmont at Mira Mesa football game it was apparent this was an evening to honor former Marauders head coach Chris Thompson, who died earlier this month after a brief illness.
Candles and a cross rested against a wall. There were flowers in a vase, an autographed football. There were pictures of a smiling Thompson, who was 52. There was a T-shirt inscribed with the motto Thompson created at Mira Mesa: “One Family, One Purpose.”
“It’s hard,” said new Mira Mesa coach Aurelio Morales, a friend of Thompson’s since they attended Mira Mesa together. “He’s not walking back through that door.”
Like a Hollywood script, Mira Mesa stopped a final Grossmont drive to hold on for a 13-7 victory.
“It feels like we honored Coach Thompson in the best way,” said cornerback Denon Fagan, who deflected a late pass to help preserve the win. “This is what he lived for. He wanted to coach the Marauder blue.
“We didn’t play our best but we played our hardest, and we got the win for Thompy. That’s all that matters.”
Mira Mesa (2-2) got 2 touchdown passes from QB Alex Zappia, 31 yards to Tejon Evans and 42 yards to Zyun McGee.
Grossmont QB Trenton Giles rushed for 133 yards on 17 carries, including a 62-yard TD, plus threw for 87 yards. The Foothillers fell to 2-4.
“This is for the kids,” said Morales. “It was hard fought. We bounced back from adversity. This is the way Chris would have wanted it.”
Top 10 Fared
No. 1 Carlsbad: Bye
No. 2 Cathedral Catholic 48, Steele Canyon 21: Lucky Sutton carried 13 times for 189 yards and scored 3 TDs, plus had 4 catches for 41 yards for Cathedral (4-2). The Dons averaged nearly 10 yards per carry, rushing 32 times for 315 yards. Charlie Mirer completed 10 of 17 passes for 172 yards and 2 scores. Steele Canyon dropped to 1-5 as Jacob Manzo rushed 8 times for 63 yards and 2 TDs. Major Givens had a 43-yard TD reception from Eric King for Steele Canyon. Adrien Chargualaf recorded 10 tackles.
No. 3 Lincoln 52, Otay Ranch 0: Nathan Acevedo caught 4 passes for 221 yards, including a 73-yard touchdown, as Lincoln (4-1) rolled past Otay Ranch (1-3). Hornets QB Jalen Daniels was 6 of 9 for 304 yards and 2 TDs while junior Rodrick Robinson rushed for a season-high 164 yards and 3 TDs on just 16 carries. Chris Fewell returned an interception 30 yards for a TD. Raylon Logan had 2 interceptions. It was the second shutout of the season for the Lincoln defense and the second week in a row the Hornets have scored 40-plus points.
No. 4 Mater Dei Catholic 35, St. Augustine 0: Junior QB Domonic Nankil was 18 of 37 for 252 yards and TDs of 13, 20 and 8 yards leading unbeaten Mater Dei Catholic (5-0) past its Parochial school rival. The Crusaders last beat the Saints in the 2003 section Division III championship game, 32-26, having lost 8 straight. St. Augustine (1-5) hadn’t been shut out since a 41-0 loss to Los Angeles Loyola in 2017, a span of 42 games.
No. 5 Torrey Pines: Bye.
No. 6 Mission Hills: Bye.
No. 7 Scripps Ranch: Bye
Anaheim Servite 42, No 8. Helix 7: Helix (3-2) QB Ryland Jessee completed 13 of 17 passes for 126 yards and a 78-yard TD to Quincy Herron. Helix rushed 21 times for 63 yards. Christian Washington, who was averaging 145.3 rushing yards per game, was held to 34. Servite (5-0) is ranked No. 3 in the state and No. 8 in the nation.
No. 9 Madison 46, Morse 8: Madison QB Reggie Johnson played long ball, completing 7 of 9 passes for 204 yards and 3 touchdowns. Jake Jackson caught 4 passes for 162 yards and 2 TDs. Martell Hughes had 8 tackles, an interception and a 65-yard TD run for Madison (4-1). Morse falls to (3-2).
El Camino 15, No. 10 Eastlake 9: El Camino (3-2) scored on Zuriel Eatmon’s 53-yard fumble return and Brodrick Washington’s 12-yard TD reception from Kiah Reid. Mackavelli Malotumau had 6 tackles and a strip sack. Pe’a Misaalefua had 6 tackles and blocked a kick. El Camino blocked 2 FGs and a PAT. Emmanuel Morrell had 10 tackles. Eastlake (3-2) scored in the first quarter on a Isaiah Hinojosa 2-yard pass to Nico Peters after Estaband Moss hauled in a 64-yard halfback pass, and in the fourth quarter on a 25-yard FG by Peters. The Titans had one last chance to win, but an Eatmon interception with 30 seconds to play sealed it for El Camino. Jordan Blondin was 14 of 19 passing for Eastlake and had 17 carries for 87 yards. Jordan Swan had 9 catches. Jayden Kendricks had 9 tackles and a sack. Christian Aguilar had 8 tackles and a sack.
Mt. Carmel 42, Rancho Buena Vista 0: Mt. Carmel is 5-0 to open a season for the first time since 1987. QB Cayden Gent completed 19 of 25 passes for 230 yards as the Sundevils threw for 336 and rushed for 85. Luke Sevier caught 8 passes for 103 yards, Hunter Ledesma had 6 catches for 104 and a TD and rushed for 41 yards and Drew Vetimigilia had 4 catches for 63 yards and a score. Mt. Carmel had 8 sacks, 3 by Darrin Parham. Jayden Virgin had a sack, a fumble recovery and scored a TD as a Wildcat QB. RBV RB Gino Trapasso, who came into the game with 105 carries for 927 yards and 12 TDs, had 70 yards on 17 carries.
Francis Parker 57, Maranatha Christian 21: In a battle of former Chargers, LB Stephen Cooper’s Parker (3-2) team edged PK Nick Novak’s Maranatha (1-4) team. Parker QB Jake Danzo threw for 2 TDs. RB Chris White rushed 6 times for 142 yards, caught a TD pass, had an 80-yard KOR TD and returned an interception 57 yards for a TD. Ben Effriss rushed for a TD and had a 2-point PAT. Effriss also had 6 tackles and recovered a fumble. Chris Williams had a pair of rushing TDs and a 2-point PAT and Avandre Kelley rushed 9 times for 118 yards and a TD and had 10 tackles and shared a sack. Parker Keyes had a TD reception.
Escondido 38, Hilltop 0: Escondido (3-3) scored 21 points in the third quarter to put the game away. QB Xavier Terrazas threw for 3 TDs and ran for another. Hilltop (1-4) got 2 interceptions from DB Aaron Hood.
Mission Bay 41, Orange Glen 20: Mission Bay (4-1) scored 24 points in the first quarter to take control of the game. Jacob Sloan kicked 3 FGs and had a 4-yard TD catch from QB Clash Orsborn, who also had a 10-yard TD strike to Jack Ryan and scored on a pair of runs. Keller Feltman scored on a blocked punt. Orange Glen falls to 3-1.
La Jolla Country Day 38, Crawford 22: QB Bito Bass-Sulpizo threw 4 TD passes for LJCD (4-1), 2 each to Alex Glynn and Charlie Gooding. Lukas Givens returned an interception for a TD and forced a fumble. Jonathan Freedman also returned an interception for a TD. RB Hamadi Sharif gained 207 yards on 15 carries and scored 2 TDs for Crawford (1-5).
Brawley 20, Fallbrook 14 (OT): Isaiah Young scored on a 3-yard run in OT to give Brawley (4-2) the win. Tanner Carranza scored on a 47-yard run for the Tigers and had 9 carries for 109 yards. Ethan Gutierrez had a 36-yard TD run. Anthony Arriagga posted 7 tackles (3 for loss), a sack and a forced fumble. Fallbrook (2-4) tied the game at 14 with a third-quarter TD.
Escondido Charter 36, Tri-City Christian 6: Escondido Charter (5-0) got 202 rushing yards and 2 TDs from Dayne Patterson. QB Rocko Huntsman threw for 158 yards and a score. Horatio Keller and Adam Pincock both had 2 sacks, one of Pincock’s resulted in a safety. Tri-City Christian falls to 0-5.
Oceanside 49, Olympian 0: Oceanside (3-2) QB Max Mullen completed 7 of 11 passes for 95 yards and 2 TDs, both to Tanner Haaland. George Nua rushed 9 times for 103 yards and 2 TDs. Jason Mageo had 8 solo tackles. Olympian is now 0-4, and was shut out for the first time this season.
Mar Vista 32, Army-Navy 23: Nathaniel Ramos caught TD passes of 10 and 40 yards while Gerardo Moya had 101 all-purpose yards, including a 9-yard scoring grab, as Mar Vista (3-3) snapped a 3-game losing skid. Tobey Brill rushed 23 times for 127 yards and a TD for Army-Navy (4-2). He also caught 1 58-yard TDs pass and completed 4 of 9 passes for 2 TDs, one each to Ashton Reed and Jacob Honeycutt.
Montgomery 39, Castle Park 0: RB Juan Estrada ran for 2 TDs and scored once on a pass reception to lead Montgomery (3-2, 1-0) in the Metro South Bay League game in the annual Warrior Bowl. Ryan Vasquez had a pair of TDs and Cody Johnson scored on a 45-yard reception. For Castle Park (0-6, 0-2), Sergio Cobbs had 4 receptions for 110 yards and QB Jose Jackson passed for 210 yards.
Chula Vista 34, San Ysidro 17: Junior Jacob Pedroza was 8 of 15 passing for 110 yards and 2 TDs, both to Gio Aguirre, while Anthony Venegas rushed for 131 yards, scoring twice, for Chula Vista (2-2, 2-0) in a Metro South Bay League game. DE Matthew Robertson had 9 tackles, a sack and batted down 2 passes. For San Ysidro (3-2, 1-1), QB Ja’Marcus Jiles was 7 of 15 for 142 yards passing with sophomore Johnny Castro grabbing 3 passes for 84 yards including TDs of 33 and 40 yards.
Bonita Vista 37, Classical Academy 13: Malosi Iuli rushed for 94 yards and a TD in addition to picking off 2 passes on defense for the Bonita Vista (2-2). Dante Herrero added 64 yards rushing with a pair of TDs for Bonita Vista. Classical Academy falls to 0-5.
Sweetwater 20, Canyon Hills 19: Keeping the ball on the ground, Sweetwater (1-3) got into the win column behind Fabian Venegas, who gained 138 yards on 13 carries, 2 of which went for scores. The Red Devils rushed for 286 yards as a team and attempted just 2 passes. Canyon Hills falls to 1-4.
Mountain Empire 28, Hoover 0: Mountain Empire (2-3) posted its second shutout of the season. Hoover falls to 1-4.
West Hills 49, Valhalla 0: Nate Green carried 3 times for 109 yards, including a 68-yard TD, and sophomore Diego Calderon rushed 10 times for 75 yards and a career-high 3 TDs to lead West Hills (6-0, 2-0 Grossmont Valley), which is off to its best start since 1995 and owns a 235-45 scoring advantage. Dylan Snyder added 2 rushing TDs to give West Hills 390 rushing yards. Trevor Imbimbo blocked a punt and Donovan Mjelde, had an interception to help preserve a second shutout. Tommy Logan threw for 70 yards for Valhalla (1-5, 0-2).
El Cajon Valley 41, Monte Vista 22: Kal-El Gordan carried 21 times for 190 yards and 2 TDs, including a 67-yarder, for El Cajon (2-4, 1-1 Grossmont Valley). Daniel Jacobs was 9 of 21 passing for 131 yards and 2 TDs, and he rushed for a TD on 2 attempts for 55 yards. Shane Hopson caught 5 balls for 74 yards and a TD. Yasir Blair posted 6 solo tackles, including 3 for loss. Aiden Robey scored on a 65-yard run for Monte Vista (0-5, 0-1).
Granite Hills 41, Arizona Walden Grove 27: Granite Hills (4-2) made the most of its first-ever out-of-state game by beating the Red Wolves (2-2). Zak Darling had 2 rushing TDs, including a 67-yarder, and Joaquin Thomas added 2 more. Zach Burton posted 7 tackles (5 for loss) and 2 sacks, and Brandon Kleist had a key interception.
Mount Miguel at Santana: Canceled, COVID protocols.
La Jolla 35, Christian 7: Makai Smith returned a kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown for La Jolla (3-3). Austin Bale intercepted 2 passes and grabbed a TD pass for the Vikings. Christian dropped to 4-2.
San Diego 76, Kearny 0: Thomas Jones rushed 5 times for 122 yards and scored 3 TDs for San Diego (5-1). Damien Whitfield had punt return touchdowns of 66 and 48 yards. Tashaughn Jackson had 7 tackles and broke up 2 passes. Kearny falls to 0-5.
Calipatria 21, Clairemont 12: Clairemont (0-6) got TD runs from Luke Landerer and Jackson Merrifield. Calipatria improves to 2-2.
Imperial 35, Yuma Gila Ridge 7: Seth Shaw had 3 interceptions and Joel Villa Campos one as Imperial (3-2) beat the Hawks (0-3). Shaw, with 10 carries, 68 yards, 2 TDs, and Christopher Tiernan, with 10 carries, 124 yards and a TD, led the rushing game. Tiernan also was 5 for 5 for 126 passing yards and a TD.
Foothills Christian 2, O’Farrell 0: Forfeit. Foothills Christian is 2-3. O’Farrell is 1-4.
Oceanview Christian 36, Horizon Prep 20
Victory Christian 56, Warner 0
Calvin Christian 21, Rancho Cucamonga United Christian 8
Rock Academy 38, Coastal Academy 6
San Pasqual Academy 14, St. Joseph Academy 12
Borrego Springs 60, Julian 31
Point Loma 54, Moreno Valley Valley View 7: Point Loma improved to 2-4 with a lopsided win. Valley View is 0-5.
Staff writer John Maffei and freelance writers Jim Lindgren, Steve Brand and Terry Monahan contributed to this report.