By HOWARD SENZELL
FOR THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
Mitch Sheppard tossed four touchdown passes as visiting St. Vincent defeated Calistoga, 47-21, Friday night to earn a share of the North Central League II title.
The Mustangs and California School for the Deaf are co-champions with 6-1 records.
Sheppard was nearly perfect on the evening, completing 11-of-13 for 220 yards. The senior had two TD passes in each half. He also kicked five extra points.
The turning point in the game was a touchdown pass that wasn’t thrown by Sheppard. On the final play of the first half, running back Derek Murphy threw a 49-yard strike to Zach Smith. That made the score 26-14.
At one point in the second quarter, Calistoga led 14-12.
Arman Yektaparast gave St. Vincent the lead for good, 18-14, when he returned a kickoff 97 yards.
Five turnovers, including four interceptions, kept the Wildcats from getting back in the game.
The Mustangs’ George Sammon was the game’s leading ground-gainer with 80 yards on nine carries. Thirty seven of those came on the game’s final touchdown.
Michael Carroll led the St. Vincent defense with 12 tackles and an interception.
St. Vincent’s record is 8-2 while Calistoga ends the regular season 6-4 and 4-3 in league.
This is St. Vincent’s best regular-season mark since 2008.
Both teams are expected to receive berths in the North Coast Section Division 5 bracket.