Calistoga keeps its chin up

Posted by Press Democrat correspondent Dewey Forget:
St. Vincent hammered visiting Calistoga on Saturday in the opening round of the Division V North Coast Section football playoffs and it wasn’t unexpected. St. Vincent is the defending champs and will probably win out again.
But I want to mention the Calistoga team’s upbeat attitude under difficult circumstances. The Wildcats lost Lucas Fernandez, their QB and free safety, early in the game with an ankle injury and lost J.T. Blakeley, a tight end and linebacker. Blakeley came out of the game with a neck or shoulder injury and was eventually taken to a local hospital for further evaluation.
With the departure of two starters, the Wildcats had just 16 players, a tough situation against a superior team. I walked the Calistoga sidelines (the chain gang was on that side of the field) and didn’t hear any complaints. Kudos to coach Mike Ervin, who continued to coach to the end of the game, and to the Calistoga players.
Also let me say it was a classy move by St. Vincent coach Gary Galloway to keep most of his starters off the field in the second half. He basically shut down the offense leading 40-0 at the half – the final score was 46-0.
Cut me some slack if I sound a little sappy. But isn’t this the essence of high school athletics: to play as best as one can and accept the results without grousing when you lose and with at least a tinge of humility when you win.
I saw both Saturday.