PD Preps Insider: NBL football crown could be split three ways

Tonight’s game against Casa Grande may be one of the rare prep football games where Cardinal Newman is the underdog.

A Cardinals’ win against the favored Gauchos could create a three-way tie for the North Bay League title.

In round-robin play this season, Casa Grande defeated Montgomery, 30-12, in the opening week and Montgomery defeated Cardinal Newman, 31-25 in overtime, in Week 2.

Today’s finales have Casa Grande at Cardinal Newman and Montgomery at Windsor. The three-way tie results if Cardinal Newman and Montgomery win.

In such a tie, the three teams will be co-champions and each will receive a league pennant, according to NBL commissioner Marie Sugiyama.

The NBL automatic entry to the North Coast Section playoffs, however, will be Casa Grande. The Gauchos drew the lowest number at the league meeting to decide tiebreakers. Cardinal Newman drew No. 5 and Montgomery No. 8 for the eight-team league.

Defense manages to shine

In Cardinal Newman’s high-scoring 42-41 win against Rancho Cotate last Friday, several defenders stood out.

Leading the Cardinals in tackles were lineman Will Andrews, linebacker Pat Evans, and defensive back Dylan Kolman. Andrews had four solo stops among his nine tackles and recovered a fumble. A sack highlighted the eight total tackles for Evans. Kolman also stepped up with eight tackles, half on his own.

Leading the Rancho Cotate defense was Steve DeSouza with nine solo tackles. Linebacker Tanoa Peleti had 10 tackles (five solo) and an interception. Also forcing turnovers was defensive back Josiah Guerra with an interception and fumble recovery.

Rushing at front of pack

Calistoga’s Dylan Alvarado remains second in the North Coast Section in rushing with a total of 1,709 yards, 213.6 yards per game. Oregon State-bound Harris Ross of Pittsburg still leads with 1,831 yards, 228.9 per game. Ross ranks 12th in the state and Alvarado 21st. Montgomery’s Logan Francavilla moved up to fifth in the NCS with 1,228 yards, 136.4 per game. Alvarado’s 11.3 yards per carry is best in the section.

Gauchos’ big boot

Casa Grande’s Matt Abramo is first in the NCS in kick-scoring with 31 conversions and 10 field goals for 61 points. He is 18th in all of California.

All-American bound Pumas

Maria Carrillo girls soccer coach Debra LaPrath and two of her players, Katie Prosser and Sarah Sullivan, have been selected to participate in the Girls High School All-American Game next month in Cary, N.C.

Forty-four high school soccer seniors from fall-playing states across the country were selected to play in the game. Prosser and Sullivan were the only players selected from California.

The game is scheduled for Dec. 7. The date and location was chosen in order to allow participants to attend the national semifinal matches in the NCAA Division I women’s College Cup tournament on Dec. 6, in Cary.

Press Democrat Staff Writers Michael Coit and Ted Sillanpaa contributed to this report.

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