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Carmichaels Takes Down California in TCS Thriller 35-20 @CarmichaelsFB

Written by: on Saturday, October 16th, 2021

 

By Collin Rhodes

The end of the season draws ever closer, making every game that much more important. Two teams went head to head for 2nd place in section 2 of the 1A Western Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic League, as the Carmichaels Mighty Makes (5-2[3-1]) visit the California Trojans (5-1[3-1]) in California, Pennsylvania. 

Both Carmichaels and California are teams that love to run the ball more than throw it, and the scoring showed. Senior California running back Damani Stafford opened the scoring with a five-yard touchdown rush to put the Trojans up 7-0 in the first quarter. This would be answered by senior Carmichaels running back Michael Stewart on a one-play, 80-yard touchdown run late in the first, but he missed his own PAT attempt leaving the Mighty Mikes down 7-6.

Stewart would get the Mighty Mikes the lead early in the second quarter with a five-yard touchdown, and the successful two-point conversion made it 14-7 Carmichaels. The Trojans would tie it up before halftime with a QB sneak by senior Hunter Assad, making it 14-14 after two quarters. 

On the first drive of the third quarter, senior Carmichaels quarterback Trenton Carter showed off his running skills with a three-yard touchdown to put the Mighty Mikes up 20-14 after the missed PAT kick by Stewart, his second miss of the game. 

California wouldn’t get the chance to answer back as Carter would find the endzone again early in the fourth quarter, extending the lead to 28-14 after the second successful 2-point conversion. It wouldn’t take long for the Trojans to find the endzone again with Stafford, this time throwing the ball as the quarterback to senior receiver Connor Vig. The PAT was blocked by Carmichaels, making it an eight-point game 28-20.

Stewart would put the nail in the coffin for this game, scoring a rushing touchdown from nine yards out, his third of the game. This time he made the PAT, as well as the last score of the game, as the Mighty Mikes would go on to beat the Trojans 35-20.

Carter finished the game eight of 16 passing for 81 yards, and a much more impressive 34 rushing attempts for 236 yards and two touchdowns on the ground for Carmichaels. Stewart followed with 10 rushes for 125 yards and three touchdowns. 

For California, Stafford finished the game with 15 rushes for 131 yards and one rushing touchdown, as well as two complete passes and one passing touchdown. Assad, meanwhile, finished with five completions on 12 attempts for 75 yards and three rushes for negative four yards and one touchdown on the ground. 

Carmichaels will host their final home game against the winless Avella Eagles on Friday, Oct. 22. That same day, California will travel to their last road game to face the Monessen Greyhounds. With just two games left in the regular season, it’s all the more important for each team to win these matchups.

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